Gorgeous full-page, full-color illustrations and wonderful story. Known for being a trickster and a shape-shifter, Raven is a central figure in NativeGorgeous full-page, full-color illustrations and wonderful story. Known for being a trickster and a shape-shifter, Raven is a central figure in Native American mythology of the Pacific Northwest. In this story, Raven flies to the Sky Chief's house to bring light to the world.
Super beautiful artwork in this book and a very delightful story. I would say magical. Definitely worthy of the Caldecott honor that it received....more
This children's classic captures the wonder of a small child on a snowy day. The illustrations are soft and colorful and there's a certain movement toThis children's classic captures the wonder of a small child on a snowy day. The illustrations are soft and colorful and there's a certain movement to the story as Peter experiments with the snow. The reader is pulled into the sensation of crunching footprints and dragging a stick in it.
I felt a sort of nostalgia after reading this book. I remember that sort of wonder of freshly fallen snow as a child. This book definitely brings that back with its simplicity....more
Here's a story that takes up the phenomenon of aging, but does it in reverse.
Benjamin Button is born an old man. His father is ashamed and the nursesHere's a story that takes up the phenomenon of aging, but does it in reverse.
Benjamin Button is born an old man. His father is ashamed and the nurses and doctors are horrified.
But as years go by, he begins to grow progressively younger. When he reaches his 40s, he is married, running his father's business successfully, and even joins the army to enlist in the Spanish-American War. However, as he grows younger and younger, he soon loses the respect he once gained among his family and those he encounters.
This story really is a social commentary on age and how there seems to be an ageist attitude towards anyone too old or too young. Somehow, the range from 20 to 40 is considered the height of life where one is allowed to accomplish and participate in certain social activities that someone too old or too young would otherwise not be allowed to.
It's a funny and amusing tall tale, but also quite saddening. You'd think that aging in reverse would be better than aging forwards, but I didn't come away feeling so. Fitzgerald was very keen on making the aging in reverse process very painful and exasperating for Benjamin Button.
In the end it doesn't come out quite as ideal as you would imagine....more
The Cat in the Hat stops by to alleviate the boredom of both a boy and his sister on a rainy day when their mother is out.
However, the cat proves toThe Cat in the Hat stops by to alleviate the boredom of both a boy and his sister on a rainy day when their mother is out.
However, the cat proves to cause quite a bit of mischief introducing the children to a balancing game that only proves to create a mess. To make amends, the Cat in the Hat produces "Thing One" and "Thing Two" from a big red box, who only wreak more havoc than what can be desired for the two children and their pet fish.
Like always, Dr. Seuss brings to children a delightful, unusual story in the classic Dr. Seuss sort of way that makes these books original, one-of-a-kind children favorites. With great illustrations, a delightful rhyming scheme, and a true sense of humor, this book, like others from the Dr. Seuss library, is one all ages can hold dear.
Wtf? This was a little bit creepy in places. I understand how a mother always loves their baby, and it starts off really sweet with the mother singingWtf? This was a little bit creepy in places. I understand how a mother always loves their baby, and it starts off really sweet with the mother singing and rocking her child while he sleeps.
But then the child starts growing up and the mother keeps creeping into the child's room. But that's not even the creepy part.
The creepy part is when the mother drives to the "child's" - now adult man's - house and picks him up and rocks him in her arms as if he was a little baby.
I'm thinking "Uh, hello?! Where's his girlfriend/wife in all this?" Also, there's no way a woman is going to pick up an adult man and hold him like a baby.
The mother has a little obsession of sorts, but I give this book two stars nonetheless because I thought the illustrations were good and the story did make the attempt to be touching and loving in its way (albeit a strange kind of way).
Of course, I'm reading this from an adult's perspective, so I understand how my perception is not going to be what a little kid's perception is. I mean, maybe a child would derive a sense of security from a book like this. I don't know. But for me, I think it could have done without that rocking and singing (especially when he hits his teen years). ...more
This is a local children's classic that tells the story of a "Wheedle" who lives peacefully in the great Northwest until his peace and quiet is encroaThis is a local children's classic that tells the story of a "Wheedle" who lives peacefully in the great Northwest until his peace and quiet is encroached upon by the people who come to settle in Seattle.
The people whistle while they work, making it impossible for the Wheedle to get proper rest, so the Wheedle escapes to the summit of Mount Rainier for some peace and quiet. However, over time, the Wheedle eventually wakes up to find that the people have built their city and towns so close to his domain, that he now can hear them once again.
What follows is the Wheedle taking his residence up on top of the Space Needle along with a bag of clouds and an idea that he hopes will once again restore the longed-for silence so necessary to the Wheedle's contentment.
I liked this book. It wasn't quite as touching as Silverstein's "The Giving Tree" or as adventurous as "Where the Wild Things Are" by Sendak, but it had a fun, local touch that I enjoyed. Cosgrove dedicated this book to Seattle, which I thought was a charming sort of homage to the city, and the illustrations were big and colorful (as was the Wheedle).
I also like how he connected the Wheedle to the blinking red light on top of the Space Needle. That was a fun tie-in and a stretch of the imagination that made this children's book all the more entertaining....more
Here's a children's book that Margaret Atwood wrote, illustrated, and even hand-lettered herself. Using only two colors (blue and red) that she mixedHere's a children's book that Margaret Atwood wrote, illustrated, and even hand-lettered herself. Using only two colors (blue and red) that she mixed together since it would have been apparently too expensive to print in Canada in 1978, she creates a delightful little story about two children in a tree, who find themselves stuck and unable to find a way down.
I thought the illustrations were fairly impressive considering they were done on a limited budget. I had no idea that Margaret Atwood had a background in poster design and printing. There's quite a bit of detail in the expressions on the children's faces and on their animal friends' faces too.
If you're a woman, and you're having a shitty relationship with a man, this book will either depress the hell out of you or it will make you feel bettIf you're a woman, and you're having a shitty relationship with a man, this book will either depress the hell out of you or it will make you feel better to know that someone else knows how it feels to be a woman in a shitty relationship.
But not every story was centered around relationships between women and men. "Significant Moments in the Life of My Mother" and "Unearthing Suite" focus on parents seen through the eyes of their progeny. It's interesting to note how the entire book which largely deals with women and their relationships with men, is sandwiched between two stories that deal with parents. There's definitely a sense of a generation gap when you compare stories. In "Unearthing Suite," the parents have their relationship down. They're together. They make it work. The rest of the stories reflect how shitty relationships between men and women are at present.
These stories are harsh and brutal, almost agonizing to read. "Uglypuss" and "Bluebeard's Egg" in particular deal with unfaithful men and their betrayal of their relationships with their significant others. In "Uglypuss," I was thinking it was awesome how Becka was seeking her revenge, but at the same time, it wasn't. It was sad and terrible how it really turned out.
"The Sunrise" was probably my favorite of all the stories. I think I relate to this one the most. Yvonne's an independent female artist who has become so disillusioned with men that she can't love anymore. She just doesn't have the energy. She keeps a razor blade in her paintbox. Her landlords speculate about her personal life. It's really nothing what they imagine.
Margaret Atwood is a stellar writer and this book pulls you into the sights, sounds, and scents of cottages in the woods or disordered urban apartments. I would only say that the stories, while beautiful, are also a bit of a downer (or at least most of them are). Atwood deeply understands with the utmost sensitivity the disappointment and heartache of failed relationships and the lapse in communication between people.
Writing with this much depth of perception, she must have had many personal experiences of her own....more