Although this collection includes only 22 rhymes, Butterworth's elaborate, full-page paintings are artistic gems. His detail-packed illustrations display unusual creativity and imagination; repeated viewings will yield myriad comic touches. In ``Early to bed, / Early to rise,'' a wise owl nestles in a brass bed, trophies adorning his walls, money stashed under his bed--and teeth in a glass beside him. The noted ``black sheep'' will not be shorn of his fur: he is, as his shop's sign proclaims, ``B. B. Blacksheep, Wool Merchant.'' A particularly clever device is the use of objects pertinent to each verse to form an opening ``illuminated'' letter--a clock's pendulums form the ``H'' to begin ``Hickory, dickory, dock''; a tea strainer becomes the ``P'' in ``Polly put the kettle on.'' All of the scenarios here are drolly unexpected, and breathe joyous new life into old favorites. Ages 3-8. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 03/04/1991 Release date: 03/01/1991 Genre: Children's
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