Este tópico está presentemente marcado como "adormecido"—a última mensagem tem mais de 90 dias. Pode acordar o tópico publicando uma resposta.
Cynthia Rylant's relatives come up from Virginia, and though their destination is not named in particular, they drive "all day long and into the night." It's not possible to get a firm count of all the relatives, but it's clear it's a large and loving clan. They hug, they eat, they play and work together, and they sleep spread out all over the floor. Yeah, we did that.
Hiring Stephen Gammell to illustrate this story was genius. The combination of Rylant and Gammell made for a classic and award winning book. Rylant teams up with Gammell at least once more, but publishers noticed his knack with this particular type of tale, and he was asked to illustrate Appalachian related stories written by half a dozen other authors as well.
I'll post about those other books later.
But two of my grands have had a long standing fascination with slime in all it's permutations. I would never have tolerated the amount of mess and destruction they have caused in their household.
I will be sharing this book next time I visit:
The Secret Science Project That Almost Ate the School is a good vehicle for Gammell's silly characters and fun chaos. And the slime blob is comically reminiscent of the monsters in Schwartz's books. The chemistry of controlling the monster is given at the end of the book, and Miss Fidget (recovered from the school roof) makes our little girl CLEAN THE MESS!
He has started to give the animals more life, but the human is dull.
The book memorializes Harlan County in flood. Possibly the 1977 flood, which still remains a benchmark.
Gammell grew up in Iowa and lived his adult life in Minnesota, but he has hillbilly in his blood. I've rarely seen more true to life characterizations of hardscrabble people and landscapes, outside of Dorothea Lang's photographs.
The book downplays the true disastrousness of the flooding, with animals happily paddling in the water which is sweeping them away. But the focus is on the (perhaps foolish?) self reliance of families and the way they always offer mutual assistance.
I was in a flood like the one described, as "rain came down like curtains" in 1985 West Virginia. We had to muck out our homes with shovels, build mountains of trash on the curb for the National Guard to scoop up, and take meals at the Salvation Army food wagon. Never did see the Red Cross.
I shared Laugh-Out-Loud Baby with my daughter this weekend; as well as the story of her first laugh out loud at less than three months.
We were driving home from Christmas with grandma and the timing belt failed. It was way before cell phones and general credit cards. We had no cash on us. Husband had an Exxon credit card for his business. Somehow, we got a tow to the Exxon station, which at that time, did full mechanics service (My, how times have changed!) But it was evening and getting dark. Husband persuaded the clerk at the gas station to give him cash on the card - something not really allowed. We put up in a motel just up the street in this tiny Maryland town, and a good Samaritan gave us a ride to the grocery store for sandwich fixings and diapers. Everyone was occupied with other things, and baby was laying on the bed with no one paying attention. Out of the blue, she gave a delightful chortling laugh. And we all joined her.
Rose says she still has the illogical impulse to laugh at distressing circumstances today.
It was a good share. I realized no one else alive would remember but myself. And it is such a treasured memory.
Gammell uses paint splatter to describe his aerial tracks through the rooms. The human characters are not pleasing. They are odd and wacky, but have sour expressions, bulging faces and green/grey shading.
I don't like this book. It makes me cringe. I can't stand thinking of those dirty bug feet tracking over everything.
He does so with Ride, which also goes by How About Going for a Ride?
He takes this opportunity to draw the words of the story inserting them into his images.
It's a pleasant mom and dad and their two children who stake out the back seat as war territory. The fighting starts with whispered insults and toe incursions into the other sibling's side. It's classic sibling loathing; and I don't like it either.
The only page that made me smile:
"You watch out... you're about to be extinct!" "Phew ... You already Stinct!"
These faces also have those green tints and bulges.
The kids in Hey! Pancakes! are classic Gammell. Frumpy, wild haired, joyous.
"Jelly in my ears, syrup on my toes, Hey, that's a blueberry stuck on my nose."
Their clean up is just as vigorous as their mess up.
The Frazzles have a hard time remembering details. Aunt Rosemary comes and tries to help with notes, lists and twine. Daughter Annie finally finds a technique that works - she composes a song:
"Apples,lettuce, bread and beets,
Chicken, carrots, chocolate treats,
Milk and cheese and one thing more,
Don't leave Grandpa at the store!"
As Gammell prods in the dedication:
"C'mon now …. You know who you are."
Based on the cover, I thought this would be a favorite.
There is a postscript that says this story is based on a real person and gives a few biographical details of the neighbor, Glen Dean.
This is another book that seems to have missed in the market. (67 members on LT) Although owners review it with affection, the pages and story seem uneven to me. The pages with the friends together are charming and colorful. When Glen Dean is telling his stories though, the pages are in grey tones (except when he becomes tangled in a rainbow, and that is done strangely.) I would have edited this story differently. The ending falls flat.
Waiting to Waltz
Here's an interior page:
This is a rhymed saga that does go on too long. Timothy decides on a silly challenge - 30 days wearing the same socks. The odor wafts from his ankles in green. Gammell does have lots of fun, and he takes the opportunity to play with angles and silhouette.
Will has got an obsession. indulged by his family. Amid the rest of his typical bedroom clutter, I count 13 stuffed mammoths (and one woolly rhino) and even more flat images on paper, T-shirt and undies.
After a reality check exchange with his parents, he treks out into the snow and plays 19 pages worth of Woolly Mammoth adventures without any text. It's a fun book.
These illustrations are all in pencil, no colors. But his car, both in motion and setting still, and his characters refuse to live by the laws of gravity. The old man is seeking directions from farmer pig. Farmer pig tells him why not to take Crying Hollow Junction, Deep Tumble Highway, Zigzag Expressway and Snail-Paced Lane. The old man gets frustrated until the farmer tells him that Ripton is 10 miles back the way he came.
"Why are you going to Ripton, anyway?"
For a rest." the old man panted, "at Blair's Inn."
"You should have said so," commented the pig. "Food's terrible. Beds are hard. You'd better come home with me."
So, in lovely profile, the old man climbs from the hood of his car onto farmer pig's back and does just that.
The boys are invited home for tea, and they all become fast friends. There is a lot that is unsettling here.
I wish I could share the last page; it's wonderful.
There seems to be a 'thing' about students reproducing Patrick Edward's scream. Google the title and look at images and you'll see what I mean. Or HERE'S A SAMPLE.
Both of these seem at odds with Aylesworth's other, much more conventional story telling. His other stuff actually seems boring compared to these downright weird two books.
The Burger and the Hot Dog is a collection of food poems, with all the food anthropomorphized. There is a veggie country band, a huge Barb Brownie who is weighted down with fudge, assorted fruits and veggies, baked goods - well, in fact, most food groups are represented.
"One night Bert Beef Bologna
Switched the numbers on his tag.
The change made him expensive,
But his purpose was no gag.
Bert hoped to fool the shoppers,
Who would think him overpriced.
And then they wouldn't buy him,
And he'd put off getting sliced."
What'd I tell ya?
The most spectacular page is where a plain cheese pizza is faulting the other ladies ~
"Those other gals are floozies
Who are always overdressed!"
Matthew stumbles upon a shop filled with all kinds of wings, and Lucy, who is minding the store for her grandpa, lets him sample a variety. The story, while different, would be insignificant without Gammell's contribution.