Ballywhinney Girl Hardcover – Mar 6 2012
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Review"There is drama from the first page of this moving picture book."--Booklist "The tender, gently elegiac rone renders this far more than a picture of how such finds happen."--Horn Book "An evocative story in verse."--School Library Journal "Maeve's voice and the natural flow of dialogue make this a pleasure to read aloud, and McCully's watercolor scenes capture a placid landscape and cozy home suddenly jolted from the quotidian into the extraordinary."--Bulletin, starred review
About the Author
EVE BUNTING has written over two hundred books for children, including the Caldecott Medal-winning Smoky Night, illustrated by David Diaz, The Wall , Fly Away Home , and Train to Somewhere . She lives in Southern California.
Emily Arnold McCully received the Caldecott Medal for Mirette on the High Wire . The illustrator of more than 40 books for young readers, she has a lifelong interest in history and feminist issues. She divides her time between Chatham, New York, and New York City.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
This book might be frightening to children despite the tv and video shows to which they are exposed. Reality sometimes is more scary to them.
By the class
"Maeve! I've found a dead boy
buried in the bog.
I'm stupefied, I am!"
Young Maeve runs home and eventually the authorities come to take a look, followed closely by archaeologists. Maeve and her family finally discover that the boy in the bog is actually a girl, and comes to be known as the "Ballywhinney Girl" after the place where she was found.
The story is told in verse, and flows gently, drawing in the reader's attention and capturing one's imagination. I read this together with my seven-year-old and we stopped frequently throughout the reading so that I could elicit her opinions, gauge her emotions (to make sure she was not upset about some of the elements such as the discovery of a body, etc.), and also explain to her the historical significance of such bog mummies. Eve Bunting's verse is evocative and lyrical, and deservedly remains one of our favorite authors.
The watercolor illustrations by Emily Arnold McCully beautifully capture Maeve's emotions as she comes to genuinely care about the fate of the "Ballywhinney Girl", wondering if perhaps they should have left her be in her peat grave, rather than be put in a display case in a museum, to be ogled at by onlookers. This is a poignant story, yet there are some light moments, hauntingly conveyed via verse and illustrations that show a blond-haired girl gently walking on the bog she loved, with "ghost-light steps." Recommended for young readers who are mature enough to handle the content, or at least under the supervision of adults who can explain the content. This is a beautiful book which I intend to add to our home library collection.
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