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Children's LiteraturePublished in association with the National Gallery of Art, Washington, this beautifully portrayed and remarkably well-written text provides readers a glimpse into the life and art of Paul Cezanne. Rather than making passing reference to pieces he painted, the text delves deeply into several works as the organizational means through which to tell the story of the artist's life. The story begins with the discussion of two paintings, House of Pere Lacroix and Still Life with Peppermint Bottle, as visual representations of Cezanne's influence on the painters of his era and those following. Readers are then taken back in time to his early days and afforded the opportunity to consider two paintings Cezanne completed of his father and to contemplate how those works might be reflective of the relationship shared by the two males. In another piece, we bear witness to Pisarro's influence on Cezanne, how the artist's color choices, subjects, and brush strokes were all softened as a result of his time spent with another master. In addition to Cezanne's paintings, the book also includes works by other artists that provide comparisons in terms of technique and style, photographs of the artist at various times in his life as well as places in which he lived and from which he took inspiration, and sketches from his drawing books. The text itself is magical, too, in its creation of a portrait of a man that reads more like a wonderful story than a dry biography. Well worth the investment. 2006, Harry N. Abrams, Ages 7 to 12.
—Wendy Glenn, Ph.D.