Saturday, October 29, 2005

For Younger Readers

No theme today for Elizabeth Ward (Washington Post), but she reviews four new novels and a picture book aimed at the 8 and above reader.

Ward discusses Zizou Corder's Lionboy: The Truth, Sallie Lowenstein's Waiting for Eugene, Walter Dean Myers Autobiography of my Dead Brother, and Toni Trent Parker's Sienna's Scrapbook: Our African American Heritage Trip.

The fifth novel she reviews is Adam Gopnik's The King in the Window. I love Gopnik's essays. The King in the Window is at the top of my reading list and, as I just finished crying my way through Each Little Bird That Sings (Deborah Wiles), I'll begin reading the Gopnik today.

Ward writes, "Gopnik, a journalist and author of a well-received collection of essays on Paris, may have tried too hard with his first children's book -- certainly, he belabors his metaphors and overdoes the Francophilia -- but fantasy-loving, computer-savvy kids with a literary and historical bent will probably forgive him." Most reviews have been similarly mixed, but I'll still give it a try.

(The King in the Window reviews in the Los Angeles Times, the Library Journal, and at Powell's Books.)