Synopses & Reviews
When the Lusitania was attacked in 1915, the American composer and New Yorker Charles Ives transformed the experience of this heartbreaking news into a musical piece. It begins with a jumble of traffic noises, then the hurdy-gurdy swells into the lovely old hymn and#8220;In the Sweet Bye-and-Bye.and#8221; In lyrical text and watercolorsand#8212;sometimes in dramatic wordless spreadsand#8212;this thoughtful picture book reveals not only a wartime tragedy, but a composerand#8217;s conviction that everyday music can convey profound emotionand#8212;and help heal a city. Young readers will understand that if they listen, music can be heard in the unlikeliest of places, from the busy chatter of a market to the wail of a fire engine.
"Gerstein's dramatic paintings include some perspectives bound to take any reader's breath away. Truly affecting."--Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) "Readers of all ages will return to this again and again for its history, adventure, humor, and breathtaking homage to extraordinary buildings and a remarkable man."--Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review) "With its graceful majesty and mythic overtones, this unique and uplifting book is at once a portrait of a larger-than-life individual and a memorial to the towers and the lives associated with them."--School Library Journal (Starred Review)
"Unthreatening despite its subject matter, yet impressively moving."
"Stanbridge writes well for young children, with a straightforward bu absorbing text."
and#8212;New York Times Book Review
"Stanbridge's work is its own curious, yet quietly inspired composition, a meditative ode to an artist."
In 1974, French aerialist Philippe Petit threw a tightrope between the two towers of the World Trade Center and spent an hour walking, dancing, and performing high-wire tricks a quarter mile in the sky. This picture book captures the poetry and magic of the event with a poetry of its own: lyrical words and lovely paintings that present the detail, daring, and--in two dramatic foldout spreads-- the vertiginous drama of Petit's feat. The Man Who Walked Between the Towers is the winner of the 2004 Caldecott Medal, the winner of the 2004 Boston Globe - Horn Book Award for Picture Books, and the winner of the 2006 Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Children's Video.
A tender account of how Charles Ives came to compose the music that expressed the grief and shock of the whole city of New York after the sinking of the Lusitania.
About the Author
Mordicai Gerstein won a Caldecott Medal for The Man Who Walked Between the Towers, and he has had four books named New York Times Best Illustrated Books of the Year. Gerstein was born in Los Angeles in 1935. He remembers being inspired as a child by images of fine art, which his mother cut out of Life magazine, and by childrens books from the library: “I looked at Rembrandt and Superman, Matisse and Bugs Bunny, and began to make my own pictures.” He attended Chouinard Art Institute in Los Angeles, and then got a job in an animated cartoon studio that sent him to New York, where he designed characters and thought up ideas for TV commercials. When a writer named Elizabeth Levy asked him to illustrate a humorous mystery story about two girls and a dog, his book career began, and soon he moved on to writing as well as illustrating. “Im still surprised to be an author,” he says. “I wonder what Ill write next?” Gerstein lives in Westhampton, Massachusetts.