CM . . .
. Volume XVII Number 5. . . .October 1, 2010
Humpty Dumpty and Friends: Nursery Rhymes for the Young at Heart.
Toronto, ON: Tundra Books, 2010.
24 pp., hardcover, $19.99.
Preschool-grade 1 / Ages 3-6.
Review by Valerie Nielsen.
Reviewed from Advance Review Copy.
The Lion and the unicorn were fighting for the crown
The lion beat the unicorn all around the town
Some gave them white bread, and some gave them brown
Some gave them plum cake and drummed them out of town.
A robin and a robin's son
Once went to town to buy a bun.
They couldn't decide on plum or plain
And so they went back home again.
Among Lipchenko's collection of Mother Goose rhymes—which includes old favorites such as Humpty Dumpty, Rock-a-Bye Baby, There Was an Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe, and There Was a Crooked Man—the artist has ferreted out a number of lesser-known rhymes such as the ones quoted above. Each of the 22 rhymes Lipchenko has selected provides wonderful scope for his amazingly clever and detailed artwork.
Oleg Lipchenko's received the 2009 Elizabeth Mazrik-Cleaver Award for his outstanding artwork in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Readers who enjoyed his elegant, wickedly funny paintings in the Lewis Carroll classic will know what to expect from Humpty-Dumpty and friends. Lipchenko's depiction of Tweedle-dum and Tweedle-dee (two Through the Looking Glass characters who didn't make it into his version of Alice) as be-wigged violinists is off-the-wall hilarious, as are many other illustrations of these verses for the very young. Adult readers will enjoy sharing these witty images with young listeners who, although unable to pick up much of the their subtle irony, will nevertheless have a lot of fun with the book.
Elementary school librarians should not be hesitant about adding a book of such artistic distinction as Humpty Dumpty and Friends: Nursery Rhymes for the Young at Heart to their picture book collection.
A retired teacher-librarian, Valerie Nielsen resides in Winnipeg, MB.
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