WHAT AMANDA SAW by Naomi Lazard

WHAT AMANDA SAW

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KIRKUS REVIEW

What Amanda saw was not, at the title might connote, any innocence-shattering secret, but the opposite: all the local animals gathered around a well-set table at a goodbye party for Amanda's cat Bubble. The place is a country field, the time late at night, and the season end-of-summer, the night before Amanda's family will leave their cottage for the year. When the story opens Bubbles has not come home, and Amanda worries that he'll still be missing when it's time to leave. And so she tiptoes out to look for him and comes across the decorous scene--with the goat proposing the toast to Bubbles, a sheep rushing up with the cake, and Bubbles in turn apologizing to the chickens he'd frightened earlier in the summer and the dog he'd battled. Amanda sneaks home, Bubbles returns some time later, and we are left with the image of the animals at table. From the beginning Lazard sets a quiet, receptive mood, which is extended by Zelinsky's softly lit fine-line drawings. However, the rarefied vision we are asked to be receptive to is disappointingly domesticated.

Pub Date: Feb. 9th, 1981
Publisher: Greenwillow