Stable

Ted Lewin, Roaring Brook/Flash Point/Porter, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-59643-467-7
As he did in At Gleason's Gym, Lewin pays affectionate tribute to a Brooklyn landmark, this one a home for horses. After an opening spread depicts the stable more than a century ago, when "horses did just about everything," sepia-toned watercolors portray the animals pulling trolleys and other vehicles, even taking passengers to the beach. This period- flavored art gives way to crisp, four-color paintings as the narrative shifts to the present and the horses that live in Kensington Stables, "a living, breathing relic of a bygone era." Lewin's chatty prose summons the sounds and the sights of the stable, while underscoring its timelessness ("hooves clip clop on the pavement as they did a hundred years ago"). Yet its future is apparently in jeopardy—Lewin concludes with the image of neighboring high-rise buildings under construction, towering over the stable: "What will become of these horses and the people who love them if the wrecker's ball finally comes?" It's an ominous, elegiac ending that's likely to prompt questions, yet no other details or information about threats to the stable are offered. Ages 5–9. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 10/11/2010
Release date: 10/01/2010
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