Search Results: "Michael McCurdy"


BOOK REVIEW

MICHAEL by Henry Flesh
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Oct. 1, 2000

"Amen."
Flesh's X-rated debut novel, the Lambda Award-winning Massage (1999), told of life at the bottom of Manhattan's gay subculture. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

THE SAILOR'S ALPHABET by Michael McCurdy
ABC BOOKS
Released: March 1, 1998

"The sailors in water-blue uniforms are young and rosy, or old and grizzled, and word-buffs and nautical enthusiasts will find plenty to pore over—halyards and lanyards, jibs and vangs. (Picture book. 5-9)"
Some time in the 19th century, a sailor created this sea chantey, a rhythmic song to keep him and his mates working in tandem to keep a ship afloat. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 1, 2000

"Satisfying in many ways. (Introduction, bibliography.) (Picture book/nonfiction. 7-10)"
McCurdy's (Iron Horses, 1999, etc.) signature scratchboard illustrations take on a hieratic power as he recounts a way of pacing the year far different from what's familiar. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

ABC BOOKS
Released: July 1, 2010

"An unusual yet entirely appropriate introduction to the famed hermit—and the other residents of Walden Pond. (source notes with quotes from Walden) (Alphabet book. 10 & up)"
This elegant alphabet book brilliantly conveys the essence of 19th-century American author, naturalist and philosopher Henry David Thoreau's solitary sojourn at Walden Pond. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

THE OLD MAN AND THE FIDDLE by Michael McCurdy
CHILDREN'S
Released: June 3, 1992

"As a cautionary tale, the point seems belabored, though McCurdy's sprightly verse is imaginatively phrased; best are his lively illustrations with their angular human and animal characters, the dramatic black of the engraving tinted with softer color. (Picture book. 4-8)"
An accomplished wood engraver adopts the form and scenario of ``The Arkansas Traveler,'' writing a mostly new ballad with a more complicated plot: not only does the man's roof leak, but ``His house was a shambles, the porch almost gone,/The yard was a sight, but the man fiddled on.'' Several neighbors, amusingly depicted in McCurdy's vigorous art, protest and try to help, but in the end it takes a flood to tidy up—a flood that takes the old man with it but fails to quench his spirit: on the last page, he's glimpsed fiddling from ``beyond the next hill'' (apparently the next life). Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

ADVENTURE
Released: Aug. 1, 1997

"Still, aspects of this are riveting, and it will certainly lead readers into longer, more detailed accounts of this two-year expedition. (map, bibliography, index) (Picture book/nonfiction. 7-10)"
McCurdy (The Old Man and the Fiddle, 1992, etc.) switches from his familiar woodcut style to realistic paintings of landscapes, ice, and ocean in a retelling of Sir Ernest Shackleton's famous expedition. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 1, 2002

"With frequent imaginings and surmises, Svenvold conducts a literary séance, using hints and clues to conjure the spirit of McCurdy. Doing so, he presents a decidedly entertaining chunk of American pop culture. R.I.P., Elmer McCurdy."
Like Elvis, Elmer McCurdy pursued a lively theatrical career long after he died. A feckless western outlaw who was killed in 1911, he was finally interred in a Boot Hill grave 66 years later. His story, still a cult cowboy saga, is told anew by Svenvold (Soul Data, 1998), a poet turned earnest reporter. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

BIOGRAPHY
Released: Feb. 1, 1994

"Brief bibliography of sources. (Autobiography. 9+)"
Skillfully selecting from the first volume of the great African-American abolitionist's monumental autobiography (1845), McCurdy presents Douglass's early life—including his escape from Baltimore to New Bedford, via New York, at age 20—scrupulously explaining that he has edited ``to emphasize action'' but has ``kept Douglass's own words, spelling, and distinctive punctuation,'' and has occasionally ``rearranged for the sake of clarity.'' The result is eloquent and compelling. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

LUCY'S SUMMER by Donald Hall
CHILDREN'S
Released: April 1, 1995

"The book is a best bet—conjuring another time and place with eloquence, humor, and grace. (Picture book. 5-8)"
If a good picture book is like a good poem, where every word counts, then there isn't a word misplaced in this lyrical book about summer on a New Hampshire farm in 1910. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

AMERICAN FAIRY TALES by Neil Philip
FAIRY TALES, FOLKTALES AND MYTHS
Released: Nov. 2, 1996

"With a preface by Alison Lurie. (Fiction. 10+)"
From the pair behind Singing America (1995), a gathering of a century's worth of stories that defy well-known European fairy tale conventions. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

GIANTS IN THE LAND by Diana Appelbaum
NONFICTION
Released: Sept. 1, 1993

"The medium is poetically felicitous; the result is an outstandingly handsome and interesting book. (Nonfiction/Picture book. 7+)"
After the many paeans to rainforests, a different kind of tribute to trees—to the towering specimens that grew only in the primeval New England forests and were felled to make masts for British warships—``forty inches wide at the base, one hundred and twenty feet tall, and absolutely straight'' (a resource the British lacked once the Revolution began). Read full book review >