I Live in Brooklyn

Overview

From days on the stoop, playing hopscotch and watching fireworks from the rooftops, to school field trips into the city, where zoos and museums await, Michelle introduces readers to her favorite places and things to do.
Mari Takabayashi?s diminutive scenes, busy with cheerful detail, bring the beauty and bustle of New York City to life for children all around the world.

Six-year-old Michelle, who lives in Brooklyn, New York, ...

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Overview

From days on the stoop, playing hopscotch and watching fireworks from the rooftops, to school field trips into the city, where zoos and museums await, Michelle introduces readers to her favorite places and things to do.
Mari Takabayashi’s diminutive scenes, busy with cheerful detail, bring the beauty and bustle of New York City to life for children all around the world.

Six-year-old Michelle, who lives in Brooklyn, New York, describes some of the daily activities she, her family, and friends engage in during the different seasons of the year.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Sunny, beautifully patterned watercolors are full of delightful detail. In a folk-art style, they capture the diversity, bustling moments, and serenity of home sweet home." Booklist, ALA

"Youngsters may be inspired to write and draw about their own lives after reading this tale." School Library Journal

Publishers Weekly
A year's worth of daily activities fills I Live in Brooklyn by Mari Takabayashi, a companion to I Live in Tokyo. A girl who lives with her family in Brooklyn's Carroll Gardens takes readers through her routines (chasing the B75 bus each morning with her mother) and special events, such as trips to the Central Park Zoo and Coney Island, as she lists her favorite urban sights and smells. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
This is a bright, happily colored journal of Michelle's six-year-old world in Brooklyn. Beginning in the neighborhood of Carroll Gardens, Michelle chronicles her day at home and taking the bus to school with her mom. Michelle describes all the seasons to us and what she loves about each one. Picking apples and Halloween in the fall, sledding and skating in Prospect Park every weekend in the winter, bicycling and picnicking in the spring, and going to the farmers' market in the summer. As wonderful and delightful as the text is, it is out-done by the superb illustrations that other six year olds can easily relate to. Bright, colorful classrooms, cluttered—but cozy—kitchens and a spectacular fireworks all give this story a realistic and familial touch not always enjoyed in picture books. Takabayashi herself lives in Carroll Gardens and her love of her neighborhood is quite evident. The text is written through the eyes of a six year old, but written with love for everyone. 2004, Houghton Mifflin Company, Ages 4 to 8.
—Elizabeth Young
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3-Six-year-old Michelle lives in Brooklyn with her mother, father, and little sister. A map of the U.S. highlights New York State while another one of Brooklyn showcases some neighborhoods as well as its proximity to the other boroughs. A bird's-eye view of the narrator's home reveals rows of attached buildings amid lush greenery. The child tells about her family, her school day, and seasonal activities-trick-or-treating, sledding in Prospect Park, blowing bubbles on the stoop, watching the Fourth of July fireworks from the rooftop, and taking the subway to Coney Island. The book's layout and the appealing, childlike watercolor illustrations are similar to those in Takabayashi's I Live in Tokyo (Houghton, 2001). Set against crisp, white borders, the vibrant folk-art paintings vary in size from quarter-page images to full spreads. However, Michelle visits Central Park, the Museum of Natural History, Fifth Avenue, and the farmer's market in Union Square, and the author neglects to mention that these places are not in Brooklyn. Also, she never really captures the true flavor of the borough. While youngsters may be inspired to write and draw about their own lives after reading this tale, they will learn little about this diverse, historic place.-Barbara Auerbach, New York City Public Schools Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Takabayashi's latest starts out promisingly. In the opening spread, six-year-old Michelle stands on the Brooklyn Heights Promenade, the East River and Lower Manhattan behind her, and explains that Brooklyn is one of New York City's five boroughs. It is separated from Manhattan, she says, by a river. A map of Brooklyn, with neighborhoods labeled, appears on the facing page. But her pictures never really give readers a feel for life in one of America's largest and most diverse communities. The author/illustrator's previous offering, I Live in Tokyo (2001), however, was widely praised as a satisfying primer on Japanese culture. In fact, it's this diversity that's missing from Takabayashi's otherwise charmingly detailed watercolors. A bustling double-page spread of a farmer's market (in Manhattan's Union Square, no less) reveals a largely white crowd. Coney Island, as seen from a sky-high seat on the Wonder Wheel, is painfully pale. In the day-in-the-life/things-I-like-to-do-with-my-family genre, this is fine, but it doesn't look like Brooklyn at all. (Picture book. 4-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780618308996
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 4/19/2004
  • Format: Library Binding
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 699,183
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.75 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.13 (d)

Meet the Author

Mari Takabayashi was born in Tokyo, Japan, and studied at Otsuma Women’s College. She illustrated Flannel Kisses and Marshmallow Kisses and is the author and illustrator of I Live in Brooklyn and I Live in Toyko. She lives with her husband and their two children in New York.

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