Dionetti tells ``A Story of Vincent van Gogh,'' viewing the familiar story of the painter through the eyes of his real charwoman's fictional youngest daughter, Claudine. The townspeople call him Fou Roux, the crazy redhead. He paints outdoors in the heat of the day, by candlelight at night, even in the wild wind called the mistral. Claudine observes or learns of now-famous events: Gauguin's visit, their quarrel, and van Gogh's cutting of his ear. She tries to see the world through van Gogh's eyes, finding purple in the trees and flames in their branches. Hawkes's oil paintings capture the beautiful light of southern France that ensorcelled van Gogh, and echo his visions of sunflowers, a bright table, a starry night. Children will come away with an understanding that art is a different way of seeing, that name-calling always hurts, and that kindness may be rewarded—but those messages are laid out with a hand that is occasionally heavy. (Picture book. 6-10)

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 1996

ISBN: 0-316-18602-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Little, Brown

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1996


At ``Step 2'' in the useful ``Step into Reading'' series: an admirably clear, well-balanced presentation that centers on wolves' habits and pack structure. Milton also addresses their endangered status, as well as their place in fantasy, folklore, and the popular imagination. Attractive realistic watercolors on almost every page. Top-notch: concise, but remarkably extensive in its coverage. A real bargain. (Nonfiction/Easy reader. 6-10)

Pub Date: April 1, 1992

ISBN: 0-679-91052-2

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 1992


Trickling, bubbling, swirling, rushing, a river flows down from its mountain beginnings, past peaceful country and bustling city on its way to the sea. Hooper (The Drop in My Drink, 1998, etc.) artfully evokes the water’s changing character as it transforms from “milky-cold / rattling-bold” to a wide, slow “sliding past mudflats / looping through marshes” to the end of its journey. Willey, best known for illustrating Geraldine McCaughrean’s spectacular folk-tale collections, contributes finely detailed scenes crafted in shimmering, intricate blues and greens, capturing mountain’s chill, the bucolic serenity of passing pastures, and a sense of mystery in the water’s shadowy depths. Though Hooper refers to “the cans and cartons / and bits of old wood” being swept along, there’s no direct conservation agenda here (for that, see Debby Atwell’s River, 1999), just appreciation for the river’s beauty and being. (Picture book/nonfiction. 7-9)

Pub Date: June 1, 2000

ISBN: 0-7636-0792-4

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2000

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