Piggybacking onto the original Madeline books by his grandfather, Marciano sends the "twelve little girls in two straight lines" to Rome, where his red-haired heroine chases a thief and saves a house full of cats. Like its models, this add-on is filled with both yellow and full-color pages, absurd plot twists and a Bemelmans-style visual guide of places to visit. Regrettably, as in his Madeline Says Merci, Marciano's didactic theme reduces the spirited Madeline to a smug counterfeit. When the thief Catarina explains that she steals only to feed Rome's starving stray cats, Madeline self-righteously says, "While I applaud your charity,/ Let me say this with clarity:/ STEALING IS WRONG-no matter the cause." Awkward syntax and forced rhymes abound ("Madeline said, 'My, what a nice kitten.'/ Her dog was of a different opinion"), and at their best the illustrations are no more than serviceable imitations of Bemelmans's style. The joy and brio of the original books go missing. Ages 3-up. (Sept.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Madeline and the Cats of Romeby John Bemelmans Marciano
The Paris skies are gray, so Miss Clavel and the twelve little girls are leaving for brighter weather? spring in Rome. Rome has wonderful sights to see and delicious things to eat, but Madeline also finds an unexpected adventure, involving a thief, a chase, and many, many cats. The first all-new Madeline book in close to fifty years combines a lively story with
The Paris skies are gray, so Miss Clavel and the twelve little girls are leaving for brighter weather? spring in Rome. Rome has wonderful sights to see and delicious things to eat, but Madeline also finds an unexpected adventure, involving a thief, a chase, and many, many cats. The first all-new Madeline book in close to fifty years combines a lively story with luminous gouache and watercolor illustrations. Beloved Madeline returns, as brave and irrepressible as ever!
In the first all-new Madeline book in almost 50 years, Ludwig Bemelmans's grandson tries his hand at re-creating the magic and charm of the boisterous little French girl. In this escapade, Miss Clavel and the girls escape the cold, rainy weather in Paris to enjoy spring in Rome. But when their camera is stolen, Madeline races off to catch the culprit. She tracks her down and discovers one of the hiding places of the famed cats of Rome. When the thief, Caterina, lures Madeline into one of her schemes, both girls are taken to the police station. Madeline is reunited with her teacher and classmates and decides to help Caterina stage a "rescue operation" for the cats. After successfully finding homes for all of the felines, Miss Clavel, Madeline, and the girls bid a fond "Ciao! " to Italy. Marciano includes a list of Roman sites found in the illustrations. Missing, however, is a much-needed author's note explaining the history and significance of the more than 300,000 stray cats that live among the city's monuments and ruins. The artwork isn't as sharp and polished as in the original titles, the plot gets muddled, and the rhythm and rhyme of the text are slightly forced and stilted. Nonetheless, libraries with a large Madeline fan base may want to include this new adventure alongside the originals.-Rachel Kamin, North Suburban Synagogue Beth El, Highland Park, IL
Meet the Author
John Bemelmans Marciano carries on the legacy begun by his grandfather, Ludwig Bemelmans, author and illustrator of the Madeline books, with stunning watercolor artwork and playful, energetic storytelling. John Bemelmans Marciano is the author and illustrator of several other books including Delilah and Bemelmans: The Life and Art of Madeline’s Creator. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.
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If I hadn't known it was written by Ludwig Bemelmans' grandson I would never have guessed so -- the illustrations are perfectly true to the originals. The story is cute and sweet -- just what you would expect from a Madeline story. It is a must-have for any Madeline fan -- young or old.