Carolyn Curtis, Author, Alison Jay, Illustrator , illus. by Alison Jay. Barefoot $16.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-84148-611-6

Children who've noticed the moon magically "following" them everywhere will appreciate newcomer Curtis's poem about a boy's imaginative outing. Jay (Picture This... ) characterizes the moon as a bluish gent with stringy limbs, a thin, blue-lipped smile and wise eyes, who follows behind the boy. "I warned the Moon to rise a bit higher/ so it wouldn't get hooked on a church's tall spire,/ While the neighborhood dogs made a train-whistle choir/ when I took the Moon for a walk." (Each verse ends dependably with the same eight words.) Jay's trademark oil paintings with their crackled finish reveal charming details not mentioned in the verse: the moon loses one of its red slippers on the church steeple, for instance, and the boy recovers it in the next spread. The artist successfully marries the cool royal blue of the evening sky with the warm orange-reds of the buildings, many of which seem alive (two arched windows and a clock on the church tower form a face), alongside trees that appear to dance on curvy trunks. Boy and moon eventually link arms and accompany each other to their respective realms: the moon descends to skip across a bridge with the boy; boy and moon sail over a playground, and readers are treated to a bird's-eye–view of a fanciful landscape. Endnotes for this soothing lunar lullaby contain facts about the moon's phases and nocturnal animals. Ages 4-8. (Mar.)

Reviewed on: 03/01/2004
Release date: 03/01/2003
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