cover image Block City

Block City

Robert Louis Stevenson, Ashley Wolff. Dutton Books, $12.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-525-44399-5

Wolff, creator of such visually arresting books as A Year of Beasts , illustrates a favorite poem from A Child's Garden of Verses. In her now familiar combination of strong black, block-printed line juxtaposed with vibrant watercolor, she explores the literal and emotional content of Stevenson's work. The simple jacket of this well-designed volume shows a wagon full of bright blocks, with the softly evoked watercolor outline of the block city in the background. This is closely followed by pictures of other elements named in the poem: an overstuffed sofa becomes mountains, and the carpet becomes the sea. The pages illustrating the boy's imagined city are carefully detailed, incorporating subtle references into the timeless landscapes of each spread. Ages 3-7. (September)