WHAT MAKES A CASSATT A CASSATT?

In this Metropolitan Museum of Art series for children, MÅhlberger (Bible in Art, not reviewed) focuses on the artists' work rather than on their lives. For example, Mary Cassatt's friendship with Degas is stressed because of Degas's influence on Cassatt's style; her travels to Spain, Belgium, and Italy are mentioned to show her familiarity with the works of many masters. MÅhlberger intends to explain what makes an artist's style unique by presenting 12 examples of his or her product and describing them, and in the final spread he outlines his conclusions. What makes a Cassatt a Cassatt, he writes, are four distinct elements: the inspiration from Japanese prints, hands linking figures together and telling a story, unusual cropping of subjects, and solid lines with clear colors. With Cassatt it is perhaps possible to get a good idea of her style from 12 pictures and four simplified observations, but MÅhlberger really hits a wall when he attempts the same for Picasso (ISBN# 0-670-85741-6). Nearly every painting he shows is from a different period in Picasso's career, and there is absolutely no way to identify the bulk of Picasso's art from the outline in back, which focuses on Picasso's more abstract work. What Makes a Leonardo a Leonardo (ISBN# 0-670-85744-0) and What Makes a Goya a Goya (ISBN# 0-670-85743-2) are more successful, but they, too, suffer from an unsophisticated analysis. (Nonfiction. 10+)

Pub Date: Dec. 1, 1994

ISBN: 0-670-85742-4

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 1994

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Small but mighty necessary reading.

THE NEW QUEER CONSCIENCE

From the Pocket Change Collective series

A miniature manifesto for radical queer acceptance that weaves together the personal and political.

Eli, a cis gay white Jewish man, uses his own identities and experiences to frame and acknowledge his perspective. In the prologue, Eli compares the global Jewish community to the global queer community, noting, “We don’t always get it right, but the importance of showing up for other Jews has been carved into the DNA of what it means to be Jewish. It is my dream that queer people develop the same ideology—what I like to call a Global Queer Conscience.” He details his own isolating experiences as a queer adolescent in an Orthodox Jewish community and reflects on how he and so many others would have benefitted from a robust and supportive queer community. The rest of the book outlines 10 principles based on the belief that an expectation of mutual care and concern across various other dimensions of identity can be integrated into queer community values. Eli’s prose is clear, straightforward, and powerful. While he makes some choices that may be divisive—for example, using the initialism LGBTQIAA+ which includes “ally”—he always makes clear those are his personal choices and that the language is ever evolving.

Small but mighty necessary reading. (resources) (Nonfiction. 14-18)

Pub Date: June 2, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-593-09368-9

Page Count: 64

Publisher: Penguin Workshop

Review Posted Online: March 29, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2020

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Though awkward, this adaptation still makes for a hopeful and inspiring story.

DISCOVERING WES MOORE

This story, an adaptation for young people of the adult memoir The Other Wes Moore (2008), explores the lives of two young African-American men who share the same name and grew up impoverished on the same inner-city streets but wound up taking completely different paths.

Author Moore grew up with a devoted mother and extended family. After receiving poor grades and falling in with a bad crowd, his family pooled their limited finances to send him to Valley Forge Military Academy, where he found positive role models and became a Corps commander and star athlete. After earning an undergraduate degree, Wes attended Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar. When the author read about the conviction of another Wes Moore for armed robbery and killing a police officer, he wanted to find out how two youths growing up at the same time in the same place could take such divergent paths. The author learns that the other Wes never had the extensive family support, the influential mentors or the lucky breaks he enjoyed. Unfortunately, the other Wes Moore is not introduced until over two-thirds of the way through the narrative. The story of the other Wes is heavily truncated and rushed, as is the author's conclusion, in which he argues earnestly and convincingly that young people can overcome the obstacles in their lives when they make the right choices and accept the support of caring adults.

Though awkward, this adaptation still makes for a hopeful and inspiring story. (Memoir. 12 & up)

Pub Date: Sept. 11, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-385-74167-5

Page Count: 160

Publisher: Delacorte

Review Posted Online: April 25, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2012

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more