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My Father Is in the Navy

My Father Is in the Navy

by Robin McKinley, Martine Gourbault (Illustrator)

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
A child's inner fears are sensitively portrayed in this subtle picture book. When Sara hears that her father is coming home from the Navy, she is scarcely excited--for she does not remember him. Her indifference to his imminent arrival belies a hidden anxiety over the prospect of seeing him again, and perhaps guilt at having forgotten him. While her mother is full of gaiety as Daddy's ship pulls in, Sara is dour: ``I didn't say hello to anyone. I didn't see anybody I knew.'' But when the moment of truth arrives, Sara looks up into a kindly face and remembrance returns in an affecting rush. Brief yet poignant, the narrative achieves a surprising psychological depth. The sunniness of Gourbault's smudged pastels reflects Sara's mother's happiness, while their softness conveys the girl's doubts. Though Sara initially resembles a boy, this is a minor cavil: the beautifully matched gentleness of both text and art make this tender tale resound with the ring of truth. Ages 4-up. (Apr.)
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2-- A warm, loving look at a family group that is not much seen in picture books--one in which a parent is absent for long periods of time. Sara's mother tells her that her father, who is in the Navy, is coming home. The girl is worried because she has no memory of him. She looks at his picture and thinks about other children she knows who have fathers at home, and doesn't tell her mother about her lack of recognition. Finally, when the ship is in and he appears, she remembers him. The text is simple yet effective and the ending is perfect. Illustrations are done in softly hued colored pencils and convey the mood of the story, although the awkward proportions of the people detract from the overall effect. --JoAnn Rees, Sunnyvale Pub . Lib . , CA

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
Age Range:
4 - 7 Years

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