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Emily by Michael Bedard


  • Paperback $7.99

    Oct 08, 2002 | 40 Pages | 3-7 years

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“In this imaginative and unusual picture book… the language of the text is lyrical…The illustrations convey a sense of place and time long ago, from drawing rooms to clothing. This is a picture book to read aloud and share…[Readers] will find that Bedard’s charming story demystifies the person and offers some understanding of her odd behavior.” –SLJ
“This fictionalized encounter…is, like a Dickinson sonnet, a quiet gem: unassuming upon first glance, it is in fact deeply lustrous, with new facets becoming apparent the longer one looks…Bedard’s unnamed narrator speaks with the piercing clarity and insight particular to sensitive children…[Bedard] uses diction and imagery that might have been the poet’s own: strong, sure language whose force derives from its very economy; small but potent details from nature and domesticity. Judiciously employing alliteration, rhyme, assonance and echoes–“Like flakes of flowers the words fell to the sheets. I listened to them fall and fell asleep”–his prose moves with the rhythms and lyricism of poetry, yet retains a child’s straightforward, unselfconscious voice throughout. Caldecott Medalist Cooney’s oils richly capture the story’s subtly shifting moods, from the utter stillness of a street bathed in moonlight and swaddled in snow to the vigor of a sun-flooded room full of growing plants. They visually extend the text’s Dickinsonian personification of nature (“There was no one there but winter, all in white”) and contain skillful echoes of their own: at different points in the story the child and poet are shown sitting alone on the landings of their respective houses, a visual reinforcing of their special kinship. And in their tranquil beauty these paintings testify to the mysteries and wonders of even the everyday.”—Publishers Weekly
Two time Caldecott award winning illustrator Barbara Cooney’s richly detailed oil paintings enhance the moving story of Dickinson’s extraordinary private life.”—Children’s Literature


Kentucky Bluegrass Master List WINNER 1994

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