Ferryboat Ride!

Anne F. Rockwell, Author, Maggie Smith, Illustrator Alfred A. Knopf $17 (40p) ISBN 978-0-517-70959-7
Rockwell and Smith take youngsters on a breezy yet exhilarating anticipatory ride aboard a ferry transporting a girl and her family to their ""summer island."" The girl's voice sounds natural even when offering definitions (""Bow is what you call the front of the boat. Stern is what you call the back""), and she incorporates the terms, for instance, as she describes small sailboats to starboard when the Julianna B. leaves the harbor. Rockwell (Bumblebee, Bumblebee, Do You Know Me? ) calls on all the senses: seagulls are ""squealing and mewing alongside the ferry""; ""Sea spray drips from the rail""; and upon arrival, the island air smells ""part like the sea and part like gardens that grow on land."" Rockwell manages to portray a girl proud of her knowledge of her summer retreat but eminently approachable (""Boats are always called `she'--I don't know why""). Smith's (This Is Your Garden) perky, color-filled illustrations are just as tactile as the text and portray a chipper crew of passengers. Readers will want to set sail themselves after experiencing this ferryboat ride. Ages 5-8. (May)
Reviewed on: 05/03/1999
Release date: 05/01/1999
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