Thursday, August 20, 2009

For the Older Sibling: Song of Middle C

The art is what initially attracted me to this book. It's a pleasing blend of the contemporary and the retro. The palatte is subdued, the lines simple, and there's plenty of fun to be had here.

Now on to the story, which I thoroughly enjoyed. Told in first person, it's a fun, realistic, smart tale about a girl who's facing her first piano recital -- "Dance of the Wood Elves." Her mom says "Practice Makes Perfect." So she practices and teaches us a thing or two about preparation and piano skills as we await her big day. On recital day, she practices bowing in front of her mirror. She wears her lucky underwear (pink with music notes) for good measure. All the kids line up waiting for their turns to perform, but . . .

At the recital, I wait and wait and wait.
Did you know that piano recitals take a long,

long time? Especially when your song is the

very last song on the program.
The very, very last song.
But am I nervous?
Hoo boy, no!
Not one tiny bit.
That's because I'm cool as a cucumber.

Then, she's on the bench and things quickly go awry:

Fingers? Hello?
Wood elves, where are you?
Lucky underwear, don't fail me now!

I like her spunky way of thinking, which serves her well as things don't go as planned. Any child who has ever been faced with the pressure of performing in the spotlight--and haven't we all-- will relate to this cute book!

Song of Middle C
Alison McGhee, author
Scott Menchin, illustrator
picture book
Candlewick Press, 2009

~ Reviewed by Joan Holub, author

1 comment:

Lorie Ann Grover said...

Thanks, Joan! Sweet encouragement, right? Definitely a mix of retro and modern imagery.