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Children's LiteratureAGERANGE: Ages 3 to 7.
Bob Raczka is in the advertising business, and the experience shows. His ninth art concept book for younger readers pairs a select image of a work of art--traditional and modern paintings, folk art, photographs--with a crisp three-to-six-word sentence ("America is a Country" with Jasper Johns' Map; "America is Jazz" with Stuart Davis' The Mellow Pad; "America is Immigrants" with George Bellows' Cliff Dwellers.) Snap, snap, snap, the ideas flow with the rhythm of a ten second television commercial spot. Designed for the attention span of today's kids? Perhaps. But slow down and really look and the images are still there, safe and sound on the pages of a book. And some of the choices, especially the photos of Berenice Abbott and William Klein, are worth the time it takes to study them--with or without the patriotic messages attached. Two back pages list the individual artists with brief biographical comments. Reviewer: Kathleen Karr