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Forever Young
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Forever Young

4.0 18
by Bob Dylan, Paul Rogers (Illustrator)

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Since it first appeared on the 1974 album Planet Waves, "Forever Young" has been one of Bob Dylan's most beloved songs. Now award-winning artist Paul Rogers gives us a new interpretation of the lyrics. With images inspired by classic Dylan songs and pieces of his life, this is a bold and touching tribute to an



Since it first appeared on the 1974 album Planet Waves, "Forever Young" has been one of Bob Dylan's most beloved songs. Now award-winning artist Paul Rogers gives us a new interpretation of the lyrics. With images inspired by classic Dylan songs and pieces of his life, this is a bold and touching tribute to an anthem whose message will always stay forever young.

Editorial Reviews

"May your hands always be busy, / May your feet always be swift, / May you have a strong foundation / When the winds of changes shift. / May your heart always be joyful, / May your song always be sung, / May you stay forever young…" Bob Dylan's anthem "Forever Young" remains as fresh as it was when it was first sung in 1974. This graceful, unpretentious Paul Young picture book plays on the resonance of lyrics that can touch any generation, from babies to baby boomers.
Publishers Weekly

Dylan's 1974 anthem unfolds as a series of vignettes following the growth of a musician/activist (his clean-cut blondness is a far cry from the scruffiness of the real Dylan). "May you grow up to be righteous,/ May you grow up to be true" finds the hero fist-bumping an African-American school chum; "May you have a strong foundation/ When the winds of changes shift" captures him on the front lines of a peace demonstration. Rogers's line drawings may surprise admirers of his Jazz ABZ: the chilly rendering style and the flat, digitally manipulated compositions recall 1960s low-budget animation. The key to this book's likeliest audience, however, rests in the many visual shout-outs to Dylan's career (they're all explained in an endnote). DA Pennebaker can be seen filming the peace march, while Edie Sedgwick, Joan Baez and other hipster icons are among the marchers; another spread depicts the Greenwich Village clubs where Dylan played in the 1960s, and throws in references to both "Lay, Lady, Lay" (a big brass bed glimpsed through a window) and the cover of the 1963 album The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan.Baby boomers will have a blast decoding it all. All ages. (Sept.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Children's Literature - Barbara L. Talcroft
May your heart always be joyful, / May your song always be sung / May you stay forever young. . . . Lyrics of Dylan's 1974 song provide the text for this homage to the legendary singer, whose early career inspired the illustrations by artist Paul Rogers. Cartoon-style drawings fill wide double-page spreads, offering young readers (who may or may not know Dylan's work) a glimpse of life in the sixties in Greenwich Village, with a side excursion to 1965's Newport Folk Festival, where Dylan went electric. Rogers has incorporated myriad images and details gleaned from Dylan's life, lyrics, and influences, beginning with the picture of a blond boy listening to Woody Guthrie playing outside Folk City in New York. Sharp-eyed readers will spot references to many of Dylan's best-known songs, while street scenes include Dylan's friends and idols like Guthrie, Jack Kerouac, Joan Baez, Allen Ginsberg, and Pete Seeger. The most affecting illustration shows nighttime Macdougal Street, including Dylan's haunts Cafe Wha?, The Gaslight Cafe, and Gerde's Folk City, with images of city landmarks in the background. Aficionados, especially older ones, will detect many more clues in scenes ranging from a protest march, to a "Save the Planet" sign-up in Washington Square and a Newport street with electric guitars in Maggie's pawn shop window. For those who have yet to discover Dylan's work, Rogers provides two pages of comments on the spreads, with recommendations for listening; this intriguing tribute would be a perfect place to begin. Reviewer: Barbara L. Talcroft
School Library Journal

K-Gr 4

Rogers has fashioned Dylan's 1973 song into an homage to the musician and to coming of age in the 1960s. Adults familiar with the songwriter's life and albums will recognize images in the artwork that recall the period. For those who miss these references, a page-by-page explanation of the visual clues is appended. Most children will feel that the text reads like a blessing spoken by an adult to a growing boy. The illustrations show a street musician giving his guitar to a Caucasian child. He learns to play it and becomes friends with an African-American boy. The two eventually form their own street band, travel the country in a VW bug, and participate in rallies to save the planet and stop the war. The story comes full circle as the young man passes his guitar on to a girl at song's end. Some of the images will be confusing to those who don't read the back matter; e.g., the sticker on the guitar case that reads, "This machine kills Fascists" is a Woody Guthrie reference. A pleasant but additional purchase that will give baby boomers an opportunity to wax nostalgic about "the good old days" with their grandkids.-Martha Simpson, Stratford Library Association, CT

Kirkus Reviews
Rogers sets Dylan's timeless lyric (composed, writes the renowned author, "in a minute") to simply drawn and colored cartoon scenes strewn with references to iconic '60s-era people and places, as well as Dylan songs and albums. The result is a keepsake of the period that will nonetheless speak to modern readers. The archetypal plot follows an eager lad who takes the guitar passed to him by a smiling busker outside Gerde's Folk City, and at the end passes the instrument in turn to an even younger girl. In between, he sings in the park for the likes of Joan Baez, zooms down Highway 61 in a VW beetle and marches beneath antiwar signs with Martin Luther King Jr. and others. The illustrator provides a partial key at the end, along with the occasional musical recommendation. Modern songs don't generally make the leap to this format successfully-Dylan's own Man Gave Names to All the Animals (1999), illustrated by Scott Menchin, being a case in point-but here's a rare exception. (Picture book. 6-8, Boomers)

Product Details

Atheneum Books for Young Readers
Publication date:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
10.12(w) x 11.36(h) x 0.36(d)
Age Range:
5 - 8 Years


Meet the Author

Bob Dylan is one of the most celebrated songwriters and performers of all time. He has released thirty-six studio albums, which collectively have sold over 120 million copies around the world. He won the Nobel Prize for Literature and has been awarded the French Legion of Honor, a Pulitzer Prize Special Citation, and the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the country’s highest civilian honor. His memoir, Chronicles: Volume One, spent a year on the New York Times bestseller list.

Paul Rogers is the illustrator of Wynton Marsalis's book Jazz ABZ. In addition to illustrating children's books, he has created images for the New York Times, Pixar Animation Studios, the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, and the NFL's Super Bowl. He lives with his wife, Jill, and his two children, Alex and Nate, in Pasadena, California.

Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
May 24, 1941
Place of Birth:
Duluth, MN

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Forever Young 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 18 reviews.
MysterygirlJH More than 1 year ago
The song "Forever Young" has struck a chord in the hearts of parents, grandparents and other adult from the moment it was first written. For those of us who saw Dylan as the mouthpiece to the anti-war movement social turmoil of the 60's and 70's, this tender tribute to his children came as a sweet surprise, and captured our own yearning to hold onto our youth. Now, thirty five years after it first appeared on record, Dylan has teamed up with illustrator Paul Rogers to create an entertaining and meaningful book that can be enjoyed by all ages. Dylan fans will spend hours pouring over the illustrations looking for hidden clues from songs, video's and past events in the author's life. (Rodgers provides a list of his inspirations at the end). Children and non fans will enjoy the simple drawings and the compelling words. The truly brave may even try to sing along. This book is the perfect gift for everyone - it is truly timeless. And be sure to buy one for your own collection.
bassmomma More than 1 year ago
Forever Young is my favorite Bob Dylan song. (Actually, Tim O'brien's recorded version of the song is my favorite.) The lyrics are beautiful words to live by and I love the illustrations in this book. Each illustration is historically significant (descriptions provided for each at the end of the book). I read this often to my 3-year-old son, but also show it off to my adult friends and family who are music fans.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
i highly recommend this book. but i would be very careful about purchasing it if B&N says it is a bargain book. i bought mine that way and they warn that there might be some minor flaws. when my book arrived half the book was bound upside down!! it wan unreadable, even by turning the book around, as they were not only upside down but back to front. and when i called B&N to ask them to resend a properly bound book they simply kept on insisting that i was forewarned and that i could get a book with minor flaws. minor flaws indeed!
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bammasbooks More than 1 year ago
The details hidden in the illustrations make this a picture book for grownups - or at least for teens! It definitely has a good message for younger children as well, but older folks will enjoy the music history in the illustrations.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I discovered "Forever Young" in the children's section while browsing...Picture books with extraordinary illustrations make fantastic gifts for certain friends...Always fond of singer songwriter Bob Dylan, I opened this book to find a gold mine...Forever Young (a state that we would all like to be in) makes a terrific book for birthday gifts especially those aging up to 40- 50- 60-etc and especially those who grew up in the Woodstock generation...
ctnewyorker More than 1 year ago
This book is based (literally)on Bob Dylan's beautiful, poetic and loving wish for his own children that they always remain "forever young." It is a song I have shared with my own children since birth and when this book came out (although it's categorized as a "childrens'" book) I bought it for my son as a gift for graduating high school. It is a sentimental bond that he and I share and he was genuinely touched to receive it. The illustrations are neat and carry all sorts of references to key people and places that were influential in Dylan's life. It is a wonderful keepsake for any Dylan fan or for any parent who embraces the thoughts expressed in the song. I love it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I ordered this book for my sister's graduation. I've always loved the lyrics to this song and found this book to be a good "go forth and conquer" read. I know that for children or adults this sends a great message. The illustrations are also very nice.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have a 6 month old son and I sing him this song all the time, so when my cousin got us this book I was so excited. He loves all the bright colors and I love how all the pictures tell a little stroy about Bob Dylan. This will definatly be a book that we read together for years!!
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Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is just wonderful thanks to the creative genius of Paul Rogers bringing Bob Dylan's words to life with amazing illustrations. This will be a favorite gift book from our house to many for years to come!