THE WALL by Peter Sís
Kirkus Star

THE WALL

Growing Up Behind the Iron Curtain
by & illustrated by
Age Range: 8 & up
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KIRKUS REVIEW

Sís has loved to draw for as long as he can remember, and this work tells the parallel stories of his early years drawing and the rise and fall of communism in Czechoslovakia. At home, he could draw what he wanted, but at school he drew what he was told, his only freedom being to dream and hope. A concise introduction fleshes out the history of the time, leaving the rest of the volume for a potent mix of narration, fanciful illustrations, maps and double-page spreads for journal entries. Made palpable is the frustration of an artist in a constrictive society, especially when “Bits and pieces of news from the West begin to slip through the Iron Curtain”—news of the Beatles, Elvis, Allen Ginsberg and the Harlem Globetrotters, depicted in full color to contrast with the grey darkness of the Eastern Bloc. As in all of Sís’s works, much is going on here, and readers will want to read it through, and then pore over the illustrations. A masterpiece for readers young and old. (afterword) (Nonfiction. 8+)

Pub Date: Sept. 4th, 2007
ISBN: 978-0-374-34701-7
Page count: 56pp
Publisher: Frances Foster/Farrar, Straus & Giroux
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15th, 2007




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