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Tattered Sails
     

Tattered Sails

by Verla Kay, Dan Andreasen (Illustrator)
 

With dreams of a better life for themselves, Thomas, Edward, Mary Jane, and their parents say goodbye to the only home they have ever known. They leave crowded, dirty London behind for good when they board a ship that promises to take them across the wide Atlantic Ocean to the colonies. The long, treacherous journey is filled with uncertainty, and readers will

Overview

With dreams of a better life for themselves, Thomas, Edward, Mary Jane, and their parents say goodbye to the only home they have ever known. They leave crowded, dirty London behind for good when they board a ship that promises to take them across the wide Atlantic Ocean to the colonies. The long, treacherous journey is filled with uncertainty, and readers will cheer when this brave family takes their first wobbly steps in the New World.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Verla Kay employs the format she used to such strong effect in Gold Fever and Covered Wagons, Bumpy Trails to describe the journey to the New World in Tattered Sails. Dan Andreason's dimly lit illustrations depict the land they're leaving and the ship's hold, as well as the home awaiting them: "One room cabin,/ Rush beds, soft./ Greased cloth windows,/ Ladder, loft." ( Sept.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Children's Literature
Verla Kay does it again! She manages to take a time in the past and in sparse, tight poetry she conveys a sense of history and adventure. This book tells the tale of Thomas, Edward, Mary Jane and their parents leaving London for America in the 1600s. We see them leave London and travel with them through "Windy weather, Pitching decks. Children seasick, Craning necks. Hardtack dwindles, Fresh fish sought. Long lines, fishing. Nothing caught." After landing we hear "Sea legs wobble, Shaky feet. Thatched roofed houses, Pilgrims greet." Dan Andreasen's paintings give this book such a sense of place and time. A wonderful combination with Ms. Kay's writing. 2001 G. P. Putnam's Sons,
— Sharon Levin
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3-Taut, rhythmic text and absorbing illustrations perfectly capture the excitement, beauty, and hardships of one family's voyage from London to the Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1635. The journey from "London crowded,/Choked with crime" to the "Freedom, fresh air" of the New World is portrayed in full-page illustrations using graphite drawings, textured oil paints, a computer, stencils, and carved erasers as stamps. With a palette rich in soft blues, greens, and browns, China-doll-like people are set into scenes that echo either the fury of a hurricane or the tranquility of a balmy day. The concise, carefully chosen rhyme is attractively boxed on one page of each spread. This handsome offering makes a fine read-aloud.-Diane S. Marton, Arlington County Library, VA Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Child Magazine
A Child Magazine Best Book of 2001 Pick

Staccato quatrains make up the backbone of this catchy read-aloud, a recounting of one family's arduous voyage to the New World. Whether describing conditions aboard ship or the life that awaits, the verses neatly sum up the Pilgrim experience. Handsome pictures add a timeless touch.

Kirkus Reviews
With a minimum of words, Kay (Covered Wagons, Bumpy Trails, 2000, etc.) uses lyrical poetry to tell the story of the journey of a Pilgrim family to the New World through the eyes of its three children. From the reasons they left and the items they packed, to the ocean voyage and the life they made in America, all are detailed in the author's spare four-lined rhymes. The rhythm of the poetry lends itself to either a rocking beat, or a more energetic pace-a blend perfect for read-alouds. The gentle verses-"One room cabin, / Rush beds, soft. / Greased cloth windows, / Ladder, loft"-are balanced by the more frenzied: "Storm clouds gather, / Driving rain. / High winds howling, / HURRICANE!" Where the author uses a few well-chosen words, the illustrator details what the author cannot say. Andreasen's (The Stars That Shine, 2000, etc.) lovely paintings are a gorgeous palette of soft tones and swirling color. He accurately portrays the difficulties the Pilgrims faced on their journey, and shows in their facial expressions the hopes, fears, and excitement they felt. A magical combination of poetry, history, and art. (Picture book. 4-8)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780399233456
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
09/01/2001
Pages:
32
Product dimensions:
8.40(w) x 10.28(h) x 0.40(d)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

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