Tuesday, January 26, 2010
A RIVER OF WORDS, BRYANT/SWEET
I am an avid follower of picture books. I run to the nearby bookstores to study how a talented illustrator has enhanced the world of children. I first bought A River of Words because it was a Caldecott Honor Book, but the more I look it over, the more themes I see -- and like.
Jen Bryant and illustrator Melissa Sweet tells of the poet, William Carlos Williams (1883-1963), and how he managed to be both an active pediatrician and major poet of the day. I'm not sure if children will appreciate the art as much as I do, but the collages of prescription pads, lined pages, poems, textbook pages, celestial maps, and childlike drawings create an energy that should keep the kids visually engaged, as should the story of a boy who lives between a world of both boys and nature.
And for those adults reading it, it reminds us that we really don't have to restrict ourselves into one lifestyle, one interest.