Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Parents' Choice Awards : Books : Picture Books
Some From the Moon, Some From the Sun: Poems and Songs for Everyone

Some From the Moon, Some From the Sun: Poems and Songs for Everyone

Fall 2001 Picture Books
Ages: 4 - 8 yrs.
By: Margot Zemach
ISBN: 0-374-39960-3
Hardcover Price: $17.00
This unexpected treat from the late Margaret Zemach, one of the twentieth century's most gifted picture-book artists, is her last work. Though it is uneven in its text choices and, overall, has a tentative, unfinished quality, it contains some vintage Zemach illustrations. Her full-page watercolor for the rhyme "Six little mice sat down to spin" is both droll and scary as Zemach gives her audience a mouse-eye view of the sly Pussy who offers to "help you spin." (Happily, the wise rodent weavers decline her offer.) The work contains no index, nor the verses any titles, thus inviting both reader and viewer to browse leisurely and uncover treasures for themselves. The artist's double-page lyrical illustration of a forest with a falling tree accompanies the eternal conundrum, "When a big tree falls and people aren't near, / Does it really make a noise if no one can hear?" A biographical bonus at book's end contains family photographs of Zemach and autobiographical commentary. The work's endpapers -- a potpourri of quick ink and watercolor sketches of people and animals by the artist -- should not be missed. In all, the book is a fitting last testament to Zemach's unique gifts.
Selma G. Lanes   ©2001 Parents' Choice

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