Gr 7 Up-A book about the contributions of the artistic giants of the Italian Renaissance without color photography is a little like peanut butter without jelly: mightily nutritious but a little dry going down. Nevertheless, this title is a worthy addition to the art shelves. Barter presents the lives and accomplishments of six painters, sculptors, and architects who represent the early and High Renaissance: Giotto, Donatello, Brunelleschi, da Vinci, Michelangelo, and Raphael. An introduction, opening chapter, and epilogue establish the historical context for the period and persuasively describe it as a golden age of intellectual achievement, encompassing numerous fields of creative endeavor beyond the obvious artistic ones. The biographies that form the centerpiece of the work are accurate, comprehensive, and compellingly written; the artists become real flesh-and-blood characters with personal idiosyncrasies as well as genius. Key artistic works by each man are described and illustrated. Though marred by the inclusion of some small, murky black-and-white reproductions, this is a useful supplement to traditional art-history resources.-Mary Ann Carcich, Brooklyn Public Library, NY Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.