Kelly in the Mirror

Martha Vertreace, Author, Sandra Speidel, Illustrator Albert Whitman & Company $14.95 (1p) ISBN 978-0-8075-4152-4
Kelly's brother has eyes just like their father's; her sister has their mother's eyebrows. But when Kelly peers into the mirror, she sees no one but herself. Feeling lonely and unconnected, the girl retreats to the attic, where she loses herself in artifacts from the past: Great-grandma's treadle sewing machine, Grandpa's black box camera, Mamma's favorite teddy bear. When she discovers her mother's old cap and sweater--knitted by Grandma--she tries them on. Soon, Mamma joins her daughter and they pore over a family album. One particular snapshot surprises them both--Mamma on her first day of school, ``wearing the sweater and hat that Kelly has on.'' And the forlorn child has, at last, a connection: ``I look like you, Mamma, when you were a little girl! I look just like you!'' In an auspicious debut, Vertreace deftly weaves strands of past and present, of objects and family members, into a homespun fabric of belonging. Every detail of her deceptively simple narrative will grab and hold youngsters' attentions. Scumbled as if through a haze of time, Speidel's deep-toned pastel portraits speak of familial devotion and solitary solace. Ages 6-8. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 03/01/1993
Release date: 03/01/1993
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