The Red Poppy

Irmgard Lucht, Author, Armgard Lucht, Author, Frank Jacoby-Nelson, Translator
Irmgard Lucht, Author, Armgard Lucht, Author, Frank Jacoby-Nelson, Translator Hyperion Books $13.95 (27p) ISBN 978-0-7868-0055-1
Library Binding - 27 pages - 978-0-7868-2043-6
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In Lucht's (In This Night...) dramatic nature study, a common roadside flower bursts from the page in luminous color. Each acrylic painting is drenched with texture: the familiar drooping pod that explodes into silklike scarlet; the mysterious, furry pistil whose pollen attracts insects; the swelling case that produces new seeds. Among the poppies live various birds, animals, insects and other plants indigenous to the author's native Germany. Attractive, illustrated endnotes highlight each species, most of which will be familiar to North American readers. In an unusually interesting author's note, Lucht explains that she has aimed to imitate the three-dimensional immediacy and exaggerated detail afforded by viewing plants and flowers through a stereoscope. Her arresting illustrations deserve a more stylish partner than the less skillful, wordy text. Awkward shifts in tense raise doubts about the fidelity of the translation, while delayed explanations can be jarring. Still, this handsome book makes ""seeing red"" a pleasant surprise in any season. Ages 4-8. (Apr.)
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