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THE NEIGHBORHOOD SING-ALONG by Nina Crews Kirkus Star

THE NEIGHBORHOOD SING-ALONG

By Nina Crews (Author) , Nina Crews (Illustrator)

Age Range: 3 - 6

Pub Date: May 1st, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-06-185063-9
Publisher: Greenwillow/HarperCollins

A hop, skip and a jump away from The Neighborhood Mother Goose (2003), Crews once again places classic nursery fare in the middle of bright, bustling Brooklyn streets. This time, however, she sets her sights on songs—34 of them, to be exact. Photos of joyful, ethnically diverse children found in playgrounds, parks and cozy home settings infuse well-known tunes (and some forgotten favorites) with warmth and energy. Many scenes are quite literal: “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” shows youngsters playing baseball in the park. Others have a playful twist: “It’s Raining, It’s Pouring” has a boy gleefully jumping atop the “old man” in bed (i.e. Daddy), with an appropriately rain-splotched window in the background. “London Bridge” is in fact a bridge built with wooden blocks, and “Alouette” shows a boy racing towards pigeons—the urban equivalent of a lark if ever there was one. Crews also offers familiar digital effects: “Miss Mary Mack” has elephants high in the sky, while “I’m a Little Teapot” shows a rather large teapot with tiny children climbing on it. Sheet music is not included, but an author’s note points readers to other books and online resources for help with the tunes. A collection that begs to be sung in all neighborhoods—city stoops or country front-porch swings alike. (Picture book. 3-6)