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I Like Old Clothesby Mary Ann Hoberman
Synopses & Reviews
I like old clothes, / Hand-me-down clothes, / Worn outgrown clothes, / Not-my-own clothes. . . . Originally published by Knopf in 1976 (with illustrations by Jacqueline Chwast), this poem—an exuberant celebration of hand-me-down clothes—is just as relevant and accessible today as it was over 30 years ago. Children's Poet Laureate Mary Ann Hoberman offers a bouncy, fun-to-read-aloud text and a refreshingly agreeable, resourceful protagonist who likes old clothes for their "history" and "mystery." Illustrator Patrice Barton brings new, contemporary life to the poem, with an adorable little girl and her younger brother playing dress-up, making crafts, and happily treasuring their hand-me-downs.
"'I like old clothes,/ Hand-me-down clothes,/ Worn outgrown clothes,/ Not my own clothes.' Former U.S. children's poet laureate Hoberman's poem, first published in 1976, holds up nicely; families are still trading bags of too-small clothes, and children are still enjoying hand-me-downs ('And party dresses/ Not quite new,/ Not quite in style,/ I like them, too'). Barton's (Mine!) spreads couldn't be any warmer or fuzzier. Her mixed-media scenes incorporate images of patterned fabrics for the clothes, and soft pencil lines and blurry edges give the artwork a painted feel. A girl in overalls and sneakers — just the sort of girl one might imagine having a sensible attitude toward secondhand apparel — is pictured in her room with her younger brother, trying on a small marching band uniform (first spotted in a store window on the title page) and vamping in a pair of long black gloves. The poem stays in one register, exploring the theme from several angles, without any real narrative arc; it's written more just for the joy of the rhymes and the rhythm. Ages 5 — 8. Agent: Christina A. Tugeau, CATugeau." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
About the Author
Children's Poet Laureate MARY ANN HOBERMAN has written over 40 children's books. She's the recipient of a National Book Award and the NCTE Poetry for Children Award. She lives in Greenwich, Connecticut, with her husband, Norman. They have four children and five grandchildren.
About the Illustrator
PATRICE BARTON earned a BFA in studio art from the University of Texas in Austin, where she lives with her husband and son. Her books include Sweet Moon Baby written by Karen Henry Clark; Mine! by Shutta Crum; and Rosie Sprout's Time to Shine by Allison Wortche—all available from Knopf.
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