ACROSS THE ALLEY by Richard Michelson

ACROSS THE ALLEY

by , illustrated by
Age Range: 5 - 8

KIRKUS REVIEW

Jewish Abe and African-American Willie are best friends, but only secretly at night, through the windows of their city apartment buildings. Abe’s grandfather, a brilliant violinist in the old country, wants young Abe to follow in his shoes. Willie’s dad was a starter in the Negro Leagues and wants his son to be a baseball pitcher. At night, the boys trade hobbies. It quickly becomes apparent that Willie is a natural musician while Abe is a natural athlete. Their bond strengthens when they discover that racism affected both their ancestors. Willie and his dad scandalize the neighborhood when they accompany Abe and his grandfather to Temple, where Willie plays violin beautifully. Clearly set during the time of segregation, the now-open friendship of the boys lends hope for a future without racism. Lewis’s watercolor illustrations are as beautiful as ever, with lovely swathes of light and use of soft, dark colors. Lewis makes the point of subtly depicting the boys at night in such a way that their races are not easily identified. A beautiful blend of story and art. (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2006
ISBN: 0-399-23970-7
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Putnam
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1st, 2006




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