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Monday, November 11, 2013

Marvelous Monday

Written by Andrea Davis Pinkney, illustrated by Brian Pinkney
Martin & Mahalia: His Words, Her Songs by Andrea Davis Pinkney & Brian Pinkney is magical. The colors, the movement, the joy abounds.  I can't get enough of this book.
I don't know if I've read a picture book that the words and pictures played off each other so well.  Maybe, but maybe only like one or two a year, if you get my drift.
There are author notes in the back on both subjects, an artist's note, a bibliography, a discography, and a timeline.
The paintings for this book rendered in Dr. Ph. Martin's transparent watercolors, Pelikan opaque watercolors, and black Speedball India ink on Arches 300-pound cold-pressed watercolor paper.  The brushes used were Da Vinci Maiestro Kolinsky as well as Japanese Sumi-e brushes.
The words are lyrical and haunting.  They inspire and bring up some conflicting emotions.  I think the use of the words and contrasting colors were on purpose to show how these two historical icons worked together, even though very different people, in different ways.
This is one I'll have to buy for myself, with the hopes of getting it autographed one day.
I met the Pinkneys briefly this summer after the Newbery/Caldecott Banquet, in the line for a taxi.  OK, I kinda stalked them to get in line right behind them to see if we could have a little conversation.  We chatted a second and I was pretty tongue-tied.  But I will never forget that I brushed a bug off her coat, ha ha!  I'm such a silly goose.
I suggest using this with 1st graders and older.  If using for younger children, you may have to paraphrase, which would be a shame, since the words are so powerful.

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