TO CAPTURE THE WIND

MacGill-Callahan (When Solomon Was King, 1995, etc.) explores the Celtic world in this story starring an ingenious Irish maiden, Oonagh, who answers a pirate king's riddles to win back her betrothed, an expert weaver named Conal. Expert agriculturalist Oonagh will wed Conal on May Day; he's happy, she's happy. Then the warriors of Malcolm, pirate king of the islands, kidnap Conal and every other person skilled with needle and loom. Oonagh, rushing to rescue Conal, comes across Ethne, a southern princess pining for the love of Malcolm's son, Aidan, whom she thinks she's lost because she failed to solve a series of riddles. Undeterred, Oonagh rows to the pirate's isle, issues her challenge, answers the riddles, and escapes with Aidan, Conal, and the pirates' kidnapped slaves by inventing sails—``a new word for a new idea.'' As the book swashbuckles to its not unforeseen ecstatic end, all loose ends are knotted up as neatly as expert-weaver Conal would have wished: There's a double wedding, and Malcolm is laughed out of countenance, becoming ``the proudest grandfather in all Ireland.'' In Manchess's first picture book, painterly oils answer the demands of this story, with fierce posturing on all sides. Oonagh's swagger and riddle-answering will appeal to young readers, even if the motives behind all the heroism isn't particularly germane to most in the picture-book set. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 1997

ISBN: 0-8037-1541-2

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Dial Books

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 1997

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A DOG NAMED SAM

A book that will make young dog-owners smile in recognition and confirm dogless readers' worst suspicions about the mayhem caused by pets, even winsome ones. Sam, who bears passing resemblance to an affable golden retriever, is praised for fetching the family newspaper, and goes on to fetch every other newspaper on the block. In the next story, only the children love Sam's swimming; he is yelled at by lifeguards and fishermen alike when he splashes through every watering hole he can find. Finally, there is woe to the entire family when Sam is bored and lonely for one long night. Boland has an essential message, captured in both both story and illustrations of this Easy-to-Read: Kids and dogs belong together, especially when it's a fun-loving canine like Sam. An appealing tale. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: April 1, 1996

ISBN: 0-8037-1530-7

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Dial Books

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 1996

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TO MARKET, TO MARKET

A marketing trip from Miranda (Glad Monster, Sad Monster, p. 1309) that jiggity jigs off in time-honored nursery-rhyme fashion, but almost immediately derails into well-charted chaos. The foodstuffs—the fat pig, the red hen, the plump goose, the pea pods, peppers, garlic, and spice—are wholly reasonable in light of the author's mention of shopping at traditional Spanish mercados, which stock live animals and vegetables. Stevens transfers the action to a standard American supermarket and a standard American kitchen, bringing hilarity to scenes that combine acrylics, oil pastels, and colored pencil with photo and fabric collage elements. The result is increasing frazzlement for the shopper, an older woman wearing spectacles, hat, and purple pumps (one of which is consumed by her groceries). It's back to market one last time for ingredients for the hot vegetable soup she prepares for the whole bunch. True, her kitchen's trashed and she probably won't find a welcome mat at her supermarket hereafter, but all's well that ends well—at least while the soup's on. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 1997

ISBN: 0-15-200035-6

Page Count: 36

Publisher: Harcourt

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 1997

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