Pebbles, a glass jar, a small brown lump. Together Lucy and Miss Mamie cultivate a gentle relationship between young and old, as sweet and lovely as the delicate white narcissus flowers that bloom from a simple bulb.
Together Miss Mamie and Lucy plant a paperwhite bulb. Through the long, dark winter days they nurture the bulb and wait for it to bring a sign of spring. In the waiting hours, they also cultivate a gentle relationship between young and old, as sweet and lovely as the delicate white narcissus flowers that bloom from a simple bulb.
As she did in Rabbit’s Bedtime, Nancy Elizabeth Wallace has combined just the right amount of thoughtful text with lovingly prepared cut-paper illustrations to make a book that is at once sweet and poignant.
The Sun, the Moon, and the Stars is a unique collection of poems gathered by cut-paper artist Nancy Elizabeth Wallace. Opening the pages of this beautiful book is like stepping through the gates of a well-loved garden. Using her tiny scissors, her love of nature, and her great sense for the world of children, she invites us to explore this playful and lovely constellation of poems with her.
PreS-Gr 2-Using her signature cut-paper rabbits, Wallace has created a gentle
tale in which two neighbors nurture a narcissus bulb. In late December, Lucy
sees Miss Mamie gathering stones and runs outside to help. What follows is a
lovely paean to the simple acts shared by friends as they monitor the plant's
progress. The passage of time is conveyed via a small calendar, a clock, and
the lengthening scarves on a pair of knitting needles. After attending to the
paperwhite, the two keep themselves busy baking cookies, playing the piano, and
stringing beads. Using uncluttered compositions on red or white backgrounds,
Wallace nevertheless manages to infuse her scenes with interesting details: the
view from the window at 4:30 p.m. changes from a starry night sky to a clear,
pale blue as December turns to January; the scarves not only grow longer, but
are found on the coat rack in their respective owner's jackets; a picture from
Lucy to her friend appears in the final scene. This title could be easily
viewed by a group and would tie in to many themes: a plant's growth,
intergenerational friendships, cozy winter amusements-to name a few. With its
subtle changes and unhurried warmth, it would also be a delightful read in a
more intimate setting.-Wendy Lukehart, Dauphin County Library, Harrisburg, PA
Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
When little Lucy Rabbit discovers her neighbor Miss Mamie gathering stones for
potting a paperwhite bulb, she eagerly helps her to "make spring." It takes
patience and care, but the days pass quickly in Miss Mamie's good company (she
keeps her young guest occupied with baking cookies and stringing beads, among
other activities). Their patience is rewarded at last when delicate white
blossoms sprout from the bulb. Wallace (Rabbit's Bedtime) punctuates her
elegantly austere and subtly repetitive prose ("Days passed. The winter days
grew even longer and lighter") with periodic illustrations of the plant's
progress and recurring scenes of Miss Mamie's kitchen (4:30 each time, by the
clock), its window depicting a sky growing increasingly lighter. The story
works on two levels, celebrating both the wonders of nature and the pleasures
of a loving intergenerational friendship. Wallace's cut-paper illustrations,
set against bold backgrounds of bright white or bold red, possess the fragile
beauty of the snowflakes that fall outside Miss Mamie's window. Ages 3-8.
(Sept.) Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
"A delightful read." School Library Journal, starred review (10/00) School Library Journal, Starred
"Both in pictures and spare text, children can follow along as the two rabbit friends carefully fill a jar with pebbles, place the bulb at the top, and watch as roots and shoots grow, day by lengthening day. . . . The promise of spring, and the pleasures of intergenerational friendship, dovetail neatly here." Kirkus Reviews (8/15/00) Kirkus Reviews
"The story works on two levels, celebrating both the wonders of nature and the pleasures of a loving intergenerational friendship." Publishers Weekly (9/11/00) Publishers Weekly
"This is a neatly put-together tale that should warm up some winter storytimes." The Bulletin (11/00) The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
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