MIZ FANNIE MAE'S FINE NEW EASTER HAT by Melissa Milich

MIZ FANNIE MAE'S FINE NEW EASTER HAT

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A truth-is-stranger family story from Milich (Can't Scare Me!, 1995, etc.) and newcomer Chen. The daughter and father in a rural black family travel by horse-and-wagon 25 miles to the big city to buy the mother an ornate hat for Easter Sunday. At home, Mama deems it too expensive and puts it aside to return. When Daddy wears it on his milk route the next morning, he tells her the hat has been worn, and she must keep it--a fact that doesn't entirely displease her. She wears the hat to Easter service, where four bird's eggs on its brim hatch during the sermon. The babies' mother has apparently followed it from town to rear the babies, and the whole congregation is caught up in the miracle. At home, Mama places the hat in the branches of a tree. Although the jacket copy makes reference to the truth of the tale, readers will find it farfetched and long-winded. Chen's portraits are often graceful, occasionally awkward, focusing on people, leaving the landscape and interiors as little more than sketches. The faces almost uniformly wear smiles, rendering the book one-dimensional with its glowing good will.

Pub Date: April 1st, 1997
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: "Little, Brown"