The Montague Bookmill Finds

My academic class in my grad school program last semester examined the picturebook as an art form. We looked at how illustrations are created, the parts of the book as a whole, how it might be designed, page breaks, pacing, end papers – you name it, we considered it.

Because of this class, I look at picturebooks with an eye I hope has been made more discerning. Of course, everything is still subject to personal taste, but now I have the words to discuss why those books might appeal to me.

At the Montague Bookmill on Sunday, I couldn’t stop myself from browsing the picturebooks, or from taking a few home. Here are the books I picked up:

I am apparently a huge fan of silhouette illustrations. Peggy Rathmann’s The Day the Babies Crawled Away is a favorite, but it wasn’t until I saw two of the books I had chosen that I realized quite how deep my appreciate for the silhouette really went:
Sleeping Beauty
illustrated by Arthur Rackham
Paperback: 0486227561, Dover Books

Sunday Morning
by Judith Viorts, drawings by Hilary Knight
Paperback: 9780689704475, Aladdin Books (part of Macmillan at the time)

This classic has been recently republished, but in a larger trim size. I prefer this smaller size, myself.
Quiet! There’s a Canary in the Library
by Don Freeman
Paperback: 044084875x, Trumpet Club Special Edition

A Barbara Cooney I had never seen before! Her Miss Rumphius is my all-time favorite picturebook.
by Alice McLerran, illustrated by Barbara Cooney
Paperback: 0140544755, Penguin

Another favorite illustrator who draws with such delicate lines:
Over and Over
by Charlotte Zolotow, pictures by Garth Williams
Paperback: 9780064434157, Harper

A childhood favorite (I know, I have a lot of favorites) – my sister apparently absconded with my childhood copy:
The Rough-Face Girl
by Rafe Martin, illustrated by David Shannon
Paperback: 0590469320, Scholastic

I’ve never seen this book before, nor heard of the author or illustrator, but it is absolutely beautiful. The illustrations alternate between black and white pen & ink drawings, and full-color illustrations that have SUCH detailing! The vibrancy of the color and the detail of the characters are really exquisite:
retold by James Riordan, illustrated by Victor G. Ambrus
Paperback: 9780192722874, Oxford University Press

Last but not least, a Lloyd Alexander/Trina Schart Hyman match-up that I couldn’t pass up:
The Fortune-Tellers
by Lloyd Alexander, illustrated by Trina Schart Hyman
Hardcover: 9780525448495, Dutton Children’s Books

All-in-all, a very successful Bookmill outing.

2 thoughts on “The Montague Bookmill Finds

  1. Thanks for sharing these books–I'll have to find There's a Canary in the Library (we seem to get a cricket in ours every year!). And thanks for reminding me of the Book Mill! One of my favorite destinations when I lived in the Valley!

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