CM . . . .
Volume VI Number 11 . . . . February 4, 2000
"All around them the wings and legs of the whirligigs began to flutter and whirl. Grant could feel the cool salty air against his neck. The hairs on Happy's back stood on end and she barked. The wind sang like a violin. Grant tried to speak to Mazie about the music, but it was too loud. He reached for her hand and they began to dance, whirling twirling around on the grass. Suddenly......"Grant, a painter, and Happy, his dog, visit their friend, Mazie who lives in a small village beside the sea. Mazie makes whirligigs, brightly painted birds and animals constructed out of wood with movable wings and legs that dance in the wind. Together, Mazie and Grant make a splendid goose whirligig. When the magical sea breeze blows, all the whirligigs rise up in the air, whirling around the friends' heads. The goose is especially magical, and, instead of returning to earth after the wind dies down, it flies away.
The book's illustrations, rendered in acrylics on paper, are better than the story, grabbing one's attention at once. The full page paintings are vibrant and bold, cheerful and bright. Even the pages that contain only text are deep primary colors rather than the usual white. The publisher recommends the interest level as ages 3 to 5, but this range could be extended to at least seven years.
Grant Innes is an accomplished, self-taught artist. His work has appeared on T-shirts, puzzles and note cards.
Luella Sumner is the librarian at the Red Rock Public Library, Red Rock, ON.
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