cover image Angelina's Island

Angelina's Island

Jeanette Winter, . . FSG/Foster, $16 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-374-30349-5

In Winter's (September Roses ) warm story, a Jamaican girl now living in New York City nightly dreams "of my island in the sun." Each morning, when she tells her mother that she wants to go home, Mama responds, "We are home, Angelina." The art's somber palette brightens dramatically as the youngster flashes back to images of her native land. Many spreads juxtapose city images with memories of Jamaica, such as a gray stretch of skyscrapers opposite the heroine's recollection of the beach (e.g., "The tall buildings hide the sun and the sky./ In my dreams the sun warms my head, and the sand warms my feet, and the sky is always blue"). The girl also remembers dancing at Carnival with her friends, their costumes "glowing like fire." When Mama reads about the upcoming Carnival parade in Brooklyn, she takes Angelina to be fitted for a sparkly costume, and the child practices a dance for the festivities. On Carnival day, the music and parade transport Angelina to a place that looks and feels familiar. "I'm home, Mama," she says. "This is my island in the sun," as Winter depicts a Manhattan festooned with green leaves and festive flowers. Youngsters will easily sense—and share—the girl's gradually lightening spirits and final exuberance. Ages 4-8. (May)