Book Weekend – Old But New Again

dead The Dead Bird, by Margaret Wise Brown.

In the last 1950’s, the classic picture book author Margaret Wise Brown wrote a gentle tender story about a 4 children saying good bye to the dead bird they had just met.

Over half a century later, a new artist, Christian Robinson, has reimagined this tale of ritual and renewal.    Bright colorful brushstrokes and geometric shapes give the artwork a retro mid-century feel that’s fitting to the author’s era.  Yet the diverse cast of children playing in a city park with their dog feel at home with 21st century readers.  This power of Robinson’s art lies also in shifts in perspective, from away in the tree branches, to up-close to the children’s faces.  The most powerful scenes only use patterns give the readers room to process this weighty story.

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