Here Comes the Year


A poetic introduction to a year and the seasons.

"I am the January dark

dappled and deep,

teasing you, easing you

out of your cuddle-down sleep."

I am the February frost, the March wind, the April rain . . . I am the year gliding swiftly from month to month, season to season, urging you with me. Won't you ...

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A poetic introduction to a year and the seasons.

"I am the January dark

dappled and deep,

teasing you, easing you

out of your cuddle-down sleep."

I am the February frost, the March wind, the April rain . . . I am the year gliding swiftly from month to month, season to season, urging you with me. Won't you come along?

Eileen Spinelli's soothing words and Keiko Narahashi's inviting illustrations make the ups and downs of the weather something to savor rather than endure. One by one the months arrive, and each is a pleasure to meet!

Describes in rhyme the special qualities that characterize each month of the year.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
With one full-bleed spread for each of the 12 months, Spinelli (When Mama Comes Home Tonight) and Narahashi (I Have a Friend) focus on how that month's personality is manifested in nature. The author chooses one defining characteristic then personifies it in eight active, descriptive lines. For the seventh month, for instance, she chooses a seaside storm: "I am the July thunderstorm/ wild with glee,/ crashing against the silence,/ churning the sea,/ spearing the clouds with lightning, enjoying my game,/ leaving rather abruptly / just as I came." Narahashi brings these words to life with a thrillingly cataclysmic gouache-and-watercolor seascape that swirls with black, grey and green tones. In this calendar year, the March wind offers a last chance to suck on icicles, April rain beckons children to watch its "silvery spray/ puddling streets and sidewalks" and August dazzles with shooting stars, "spiraling toward your window,/ amazing your eyes." Lyrical and contemplative, this volume may well inspire readers to take a closer look at the world around them and to consider other events in nature that define their experiences. Ages 4-7. (Mar.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Children's Literature
Each double-page spread contains a brief poem about a month, from January to December. The verses are rich with images, from "January dark, dappled and deep," and "February frost strumming the air," to November leaves, "a crunchy rumpus of shades and shapes..." and December snow "pulling a blanket over the earth, dusting your dreams..." Rich as the verbal images are, Narahashi finds the visuals to add meaning. Her watercolors work naturalistically, with a delicate touch; her characters are immediately appealing. 2002, Henry Holt, $16.95. Ages 4 to 7. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 3-Each month speaks in a lyrical voice about its own special characteristics. "I am the January dark, dappled and deep .I am the February frost strumming the air .I am the March wind prattling by, pulling the last bit of winter all through the sky ." Some stanzas flow smoothly; in others the rhymes seem forced. Alliteration, descriptive action verbs, and lots of imagery make this title a good choice for reading aloud. However, although the words are appropriate for primary-grade children, the illustrations in gouache and watercolor depict very young children at play. Preschoolers may be attracted to the art, but older children who will best appreciate the language will likely be turned off by it.-Sally R. Dow, Ossining Public Library, NY Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
"I am . . .," declare the months, as they introduce themselves, starting from the first, January, waking a red-haired child, "easing you out of your cuddle-down sleep" and ending with the last, December, "slowing the evening rush, pulling a blanket over the earth, dusting your dreams . . . hush . . . hush." The blanket, seen on the end papers, is a cozy, tied quilt decorated with pastel seasonal themes, which unfortunately will be partially concealed under library preparation. Double-paged spreads offer space to depict the characteristics of each month with glorious colors that are "dazzling, bold" and descriptive verbs that "glisten," "zing," and "tint," as they create melodious patterns that "tin-tin" tinkle. The rhymes jump, holler, and flow in all the right places, complemented by the watercolor-and-gouache illustrations. Spinelli (Sophie's Masterpiece, 2001, etc.) and Narahashi (A Fawn in the Grass, 2001, etc.) have produced an impressive new calendar that will please both the eye and ear. (Picture book. 4-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780805066852
  • Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
  • Publication date: 3/28/2002
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 7 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.32 (w) x 8.36 (h) x 0.52 (d)

Meet the Author

Eileen Spinelli

Eileen Spinelli is the author of many children's books. She lives in West Chester, Pennsylvania, with her husband, author Jerry Spinelli.

Keiko Narahashi is the illustrator of several books for young readers, including Without Wings, Mother, How Can I Fly? by Norma Farber. Ms. Narahashi lives with her family in New York City.

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