Block City by Robert Louis Stevenson, Daniel Kirk |, Hardcover | Barnes & Noble
Block City

Block City

by Robert Louis Stevenson, Daniel Kirk
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

What are you able to build with your blocks?
Renowned illustrator Daniel Kirk has joined his "blocks" — in this case, bright colors, bold shapes, and retro style — with Robert Louis Stevenson's classic poem to construct a nostalgic yet exuberant celebration of fun and imagination. It is a joyous look at playtime that will encourage toddlers to

Overview

What are you able to build with your blocks?
Renowned illustrator Daniel Kirk has joined his "blocks" — in this case, bright colors, bold shapes, and retro style — with Robert Louis Stevenson's classic poem to construct a nostalgic yet exuberant celebration of fun and imagination. It is a joyous look at playtime that will encourage toddlers to build dreams all their own!

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Wolff, creator of such visually arresting books as A Year of Beasts, illustrates a favorite poem from A Child's Garden of Verses. In her now familiar combination of strong black, block-printed line juxtaposed with vibrant watercolor, she explores the literal and emotional content of Stevenson's work. The simple jacket of this well-designed volume shows a wagon full of bright blocks, with the softly evoked watercolor outline of the block city in the background. This is closely followed by pictures of other elements named in the poem: an overstuffed sofa becomes mountains, and the carpet becomes the sea. The pages illustrating the boy's imagined city are carefully detailed, incorporating subtle references into the timeless landscapes of each spread. Ages 3-7. (September)
Children's Literature
Stevenson's poem opens up the world of possibilities for a child with imagination and a large set of blocks. As the rain pours down outside, Kirk invites us to explore with a young boy the wondrous construction that takes him on the adventure the poet describes. The nostalgia of the author's memory of "my town by the sea" can be felt by the adult reader, but the sense of power in the building and even the destruction is clear to all. Using Prismacolor pencils and gouache paints, Kirk slickly fills his spreads with inventive but believable block constructions and peoples them with wooden dolls. The lucky young boy with the buckets of blocks gives scale to and personalizes the creations. But it is the care with which the blocks are rendered, and the town, city, palace, etc. are designed that draw us into his artistic processes. The visual story ends with the end of the rain and friends calling to come out to play, as the words reminisce about the past. 2005, Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, Ages 3 to 6.
—Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2 Wolff's colorful paintings, which resemble block prints, cleverly combine with and enrich Stevenson's poem. Large two-page spreads show a young boy at home reading on a rainy day. As he starts to build with his blocks on the floor he creates an elaborate landscape that comes alive. The hard edges of the cut block contrast with muted colors that fade off into the distance to echo the corresponding relationship in the poem whereby the solid building blocks combine with the child's imagination to create a world of palaces and harbors, sailing ships and kings. Perhaps with this lovely introduction, new readers will be drawn to Stevenson's A Child's Garden of Verses, from which this poem is taken. Judith Gloyer, Milwaukee Public Library
Kirkus Reviews
Echoing Ashley Wolff's 1988 approach to Stevenson's poetic tribute to the power of imagination, Kirk begins with neatly drawn scenes of a child in a playroom, assembling large wooden blocks into, "A kirk and a mill and a palace beside, / And a harbor as well where my vessels may ride." All of these acquire grand architectural details and toy-like inhabitants as the pages turn, until at last the narrator declares, "Now I have done with it, down let it go!" In a final twist, the young city-builder is shown running outside, into a well-kept residential neighborhood in which all the houses except his have been transformed into piles of blocks. Not much to choose between the two interpretations, but it's a poem that every child should have an opportunity to know. (Picture book/poetry. 5-7)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780689869648
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
Publication date:
08/01/2005
Pages:
32
Sales rank:
407,796
Product dimensions:
10.00(w) x 10.00(h) x 0.40(d)
Age Range:
3 - 6 Years

Meet the Author

Robert Louis Stevenson was born on November 13, 1850. He spent his childhood in Edinburgh, Scotland, but traveled widely in the United States and throughout the South Seas. The author of many novels, including The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Kidnapped, The Black Arrow, and Treasure Island, he died in 1894.

Daniel Kirk has written and illustrated numerous books, including Hush, Little Alien; Bigger; Humpty Dumpty; Jack and Jill; Moondogs; and Snow Family. In addition he has illustrated two poetry collections; Go! and Dogs Rule!; and several titles by other authors, namely Chugga Chugga Choo Choo and My Truck Is Stuck by Kevin Lewis, and Hello, Hello! by Miriam Schlein. Kirk lives in New Jersey with his wife, author-illustrator Julia Gordon, and three teenage children.

Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
November 13, 1850
Date of Death:
December 3, 1894
Place of Birth:
Edinburgh, Scotland
Place of Death:
Vailima, Samoa
Education:
Edinburgh University, 1875

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >