Isabel's Reviews > The Cricket in Times Square

The Cricket in Times Square by George Selden
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Apr 04, 11

bookshelves: chapter-book-with-kids, childrens, read-to-elf
Read from March 10 to April 04, 2011

The pictures are fabulous.

Selden creates a little subculture of animals in this book that end up revealing a lot about human beings. It is very sweet that each animal is so different and yet they fit together in a strong friendship.

Similarly, Mario learns about crickets from the generous Chinese merchant who tells him a tale from his own country. His story conveys that crickets are forever dispelling wisdom that no one can understand anymore. This idea of underappreciated or invisible presences is probably what makes the book so gripping. Here is a teeny tiny cricket, hiding in a matchbox with a friendship that can fill a book.

Mario himself is just a child, but his trip to find a cage for his cricket takes us to China as the old man shares his story in a shop filled with antiques from his hometown. Chester himself appears only after a search through a rubbish pile, where he was making his beautiful song. This theme of things that are hidden in plain sight contributes to an overall sense of possibility and magic in the everyday.

I loved how Chester was so faithful to his human family even though they really don't figure that much into most of his life. His daily intereactions are mainly with a cat and a mouse. Still, Chester understands the feelings of his humans so well that he is torn when Mario is punished for Chester's accidentally eating a two dollar bill.
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Reading Progress

03/16/2011 page 67
47.0%

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