Hurwitz reaches into the bottomless grab-bag of maxims and homilies and selects a handful of the better-known examples to delight and instruct her readers. With a nod to Benjamin Franklin, father of the American adage, the brief preface explains the history of proverbs and then lets the words--and pictures--speak for themselves. Rayevsky's distinctive, exaggerated style is splendidly suited to this dynamic collection. His larger-than-life caricatures give a fresh and funny twist to the sayings, which are often linked visually (the illustrations for ``A watched pot never boils'' and ``Too many cooks spoil the broth,'' on facing pages, feature the same bumbling chefs around the same suspicious kettle). Don't miss the endpapers--Rayevsky whets readers' appetites with a droll panorama of villagers who look gift horses in the mouth, wield new brooms to sweep clean, etc. One especially wry vignette shows a man adding a coin to the piggy bank on his windowsill just as the bank is about to be snatched by a masked burglar, thus demonstrating that although a penny saved may be a penny earned, a fool and his money are soon parted. An afterword provocatively pairs contradictory proverbs, e.g,. ``Look before you leap'' and ``He who hesitates is lost.'' Ages 4-up. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 02/28/1994 Release date: 03/01/1994 Genre: Nonfiction
During the Covid-19 crisis, Publishers Weekly is providing free digital access to our magazine, archive, and website. To receive the access to the latest issue delivered to your inbox free each week, enter your email below.