|See you next year|
Author: Larsen, Andrew
Every summer, a girl's family drives down the same roads, passes through the same towns, and spends a week at the same beachside motel. Year after year, everything is comfortingly predictable. But this year, something is different when she meets a new friend.
Kirkus Reviews (+) (01/15/15)
School Library Journal (00/03/15)
Booklist (+) (05/01/15)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (00/06/15)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 03/01/2015 PreS-Gr 3—In limited text composed of short sentences that could have been written by an early elementary-grade student, a young girl describes her weeklong summer vacation at the beach—a trip she takes with her parents every year. She begins with their drive down the same roads to the same motel where they have stayed each summer since she was small. Then comes her terse description of a typical day at the beach— the tractor that pulls a beach raker through the sand before breakfast, the seagulls that walk the beach until the people arrive, the "sea of umbrellas" and people, and the mass exodus in late afternoon. This year she has a new friend in a boy her age who teaches her how to dive under the waves near the beach. There is a band concert one evening and a bonfire and marshmallow roast at week's end. Then it is time to go home and look forward to seeing her new friend next summer. "Nothing changes," she says. "That's why I like it." Stewart's appealing stylized illustrations have a somewhat old-fashioned feel and pair well with the text. Most are two-toned in a range of blue and yellow shades: turquoise ocean; cobalt, cornflower, and indigo skies; primary yellow moonlight; ochre shadows. Facial features are not shown; close-ups are painted from the back or side. Each full-page picture illustrates the white page of text facing it. VERDICT A good seasonal read-aloud to prompt discussion or provide inspiration for a first-person writing assignment.—Susan Scheps, formerly at Shaker Public Library, OH - Copyright 2015 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 05/01/2015 *Starred Review* Some of the most magical days of a child’s life happen on a summer vacation, and this slim book perfectly captures the moments that make memories. The young narrator describes how every year the family takes the same roads to the same beach where the same motel waits for them: “Nothing changes, that’s why I like it.” She goes on to tell what her vacation is like, day by day: the holiday makers at the beach; meeting a new friend (a break in the routine that does enhance the trip); swimming during the day and going to the bandstand at night; finding things to do when the weather is disappointing. Some might say this is a story where not much happens, but each little moment is something to be cherished. The artwork is terrifically retro, almost resembling woodcuts. Visually, the pictures have depth, and emotionally, they have perception, and young readers will want to look and look again. Often the colorings are beachy—watery blues and sandy tans—but the night art is dramatic, especially the roaring bonfire, all blazing reds and oranges. A lovely, thoughtful piece of bookmaking. - Copyright 2015 Booklist.
Bulletin for the Center... - 06/01/2015 A young girl recounts the pleasures of an annual vacation at the same beach-front motel, including swimming, digging in the sand, concerts in the park, writing postcards home, bonfires on the beach, and making new friends. The details of the girl’s experience may seem a bit mundane to kids who favor more energy and action on a summer trip, but the girl clearly appreciates the simple familiarity of events. The short sentences of the narration, each printed on a separate line, are crisp and accessible: “On Thursday my new friend and I have nothing to do. So we dig a hole. We want to dig all the way to the center of the earth. We don’t quite get there. But we hit water.” Stewart’s illustrations are strikingly composed and colored, with each spread utilizing a restricted palette, the hues of which change from scene to scene. A picture of the girl on the motel balcony at twilight, for example, features deepening shades of blue, accented with the pale yellow of the motel’s artificial light (highlighting the balcony and the girl) and the black of shadows and vegetation, while a smudge of coral at the horizon indicates the just-set sun. Slightly splotchy texturing of the landscapes and backgrounds and thick outlines of some figures give substance to the elegant compositions. Stewart also rarely depicts the girl from the front, instead giving viewers the same perspective (almost) as the girl herself. Use this along with Perkins’ Pictures from Our Vacation (BCCB 7/07) in summer- or beach-themed storytimes, or share it as a prelude (or postlude) to a similar summer getaway. JH - Copyright 2015 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.