cover image The Paper Crane

The Paper Crane

Molly Bang. Greenwillow Books, $16.99 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-688-04108-3

Collaborating with her distinguished mother Betsy Bang and working on her own, Molly Bang has received awards including two Caldecott Honors for Ten, Nine, Eight and The Grey Lady and the Strawberry Snatcher. She has another front contender in this amazingly ingenious book. A restaurant owner and his son lose their clientele when a new superhighway bypasses their street. When a poor man comes to them one evening, they gladly serve him a fine meal for pay. Before leaving, he gives his hosts a paper crane which will be a living, dancing bird when they clap their hands. The dancing crane brings crowds to the restaurant and prosperity to the kind owners as well as a joyful surprise to readers at the story's end. In the color pictures, one sees everything in three-dimensions, an artistic effect created by lovely collages and paintings. A sandwich on a plate, roses in a vase, etc., seem real enough to pick up. (58)