cover image Apartment House

Apartment House

Julie Madeline Schmidt. Abingdon Press, $12.95 (31pp) ISBN 978-0-687-01533-7

The internationally famous tenants in an apartment building are all working up to a grand, as yet unnamed, event: a painter from Spain creates a real work of art; a soprano hits her highest note ever; two grandchildren of a famous composer prepare a homemade duet; lion trainers prepare for a big night with an old cat, and on it goes. In the meantime, the super of the building, Mr. Wong, is distressed because it's his birthday, and no one has rememberedhe thinks. The truth is that everyone has remembered, and the old gentleman has the best night of his life. Though predictable, the heart of this piece is in the right place, and children will love the up-and-down, cutaway views of the building and its tenants' cumulative efforts toward a grand finale. Riggio's pictures are sometimes so jolly that they become tiresome, but the collective mood of the lodgers will capture the goodwill of readers. Ages 4-8. (May)