I LIKE OLD CLOTHES by Mary Ann Hoberman


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If second-hand clothes make a more original subject for rhyme than the animals Hoberman did so well with in The Raucous Ark (1973), they also have far fewer possibilities. So Hoberman, despite her way with silly rhyme, is reduced to stretching that initial idea about as far as the children here stretch their clothing dollars: ""I like old clothes,/ Hand-me-down clothes,/ Worn ourgrown clothes,/ Not-my-own clothes. . . .Clothes with a history,/ Clothes with a mystery,/ Sweaters and shirts/That are brother-and-sistery. . . . Once-for-good clothes,/ Now-for-play clothes. . . ."" etc., etc. There is also some speculation about who might have worn the clothes before ""I"" acquired them, but that theme too is more recycled than developed. Ditto for Chwast's overpopulated pictures, which change color (within severe limits) and setting (wildly--from local playground to tropical island to ancient Egypt) with every double page but never introduce any imaginative variety in the disposition of the freakish cast. You might try it on the way to Aunt Sally's. . . and then pass it along.

Pub Date: April 3rd, 1976
Publisher: Knopf