SEE THE CITY

THE JOURNEY OF MANHATTAN UNFURLED

Several years ago the artist made two 37-foot-long pen-and-ink drawings, one of the East Side and one of the West Side of Manhattan. They are full of charm and energy and life, and are instantly recognizable, even down to the Twin Towers, which “will be remembered forever.” Those drawings have been turned into a marvelous work for children, a dos-à-dos binding enabling readers to turn the volume over to unfold both sides. With his young readers in mind, Pericoli has put little labels on many of the buildings, streets, bridges, and features of Manhattan, and periodically also labels a wave so you know you are on the shoreline. His running text is as limpid and clear as water, describing for young people what he saw, what he drew, and how they too could draw what they see, so long as they look carefully enough. The Little Red Lighthouse (and the Cloisters and where the Bronx ends) are noted, as are the 2,215 windows he drew in buildings near the Brooklyn Bridge. Just wonderful. (Picture book. 5-10)

Pub Date: Aug. 10, 2004

ISBN: 0-375-82469-3

Page Count: 64

Publisher: Knopf

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2004

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THE BEST CHEF IN SECOND GRADE

An impending school visit by a celebrity chef sends budding cook Ollie into a tailspin. He and his classmates are supposed to bring a favorite family food for show and tell, but his family doesn’t have a clear choice—besides, his little sister Rosy doesn’t like much of anything. What to do? As in their previous two visits to Room 75, Kenah builds suspense while keeping the tone light, and Carter adds both bright notes of color and familiar home and school settings in her cartoon illustrations. Eventually, Ollie winkles favorite ingredients out of his clan, which he combines into a mac-and-cheese casserole with a face on top that draws delighted praise from the class’s renowned guest. As Ollie seems to do his kitchen work without parental assistance, a cautionary tip or two (and maybe a recipe) might not have gone amiss here, but the episode’s mouthwatering climax and resolution will guarantee smiles of contentment all around. (Easy reader. 6-7)

Pub Date: Dec. 1, 2007

ISBN: 978-0-06-053561-2

Page Count: 48

Publisher: HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15, 2007

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DOG HEAVEN

Rylant's debut as a picture book illustrator (not to be confused with her board book debut as a collagist in The Everyday Books, 1993) offers sweet comfort to all who have lost loved ones, pets or otherwise. ``When dogs go to Heaven, they don't need wings because God knows that dogs love running best. He gives them fields. Fields and fields and fields.'' There are geese to bark at, plenty of children, biscuits, and, for those that need them, homes. In page- filling acrylics, small, simply brushed figures float against huge areas of bright colors: pictures infused with simple, doggy joy. At the end, an old man leans on a cane as he walks up a slope toward a small white dog: ``Dogs in Dog Heaven may stay as long as they like. . . .They will be there when old friends show up. They will be there at the door.'' Pure, tender, lyrical without being overearnest, and deeply felt. (Picture book. 5-9)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-590-41701-0

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Blue Sky/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 1995

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