cover image City Night

City Night

Eve Rice. Greenwillow Books, $12.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-688-06856-1

""The city lights/ up at night./ Going./Glowing./ Yellow/ Bright!'' In this book for the very young, a family sets out for a nighttime jaunt to a street fair, against city skies that deepen from blue twilight to midnight blue, and a city skyline of clock tower, highrises, warehouses. The simple text of singsong phrases in very short lines leans heavily on participle strings, (``Rustling, rumbling, roaring, ringing'') which nicely evoke city night sounds and textures. Pictures of the crowded fair lose the family in a sea of puppet shows, magicians, musicians and clowns in a panorama that is magical and timeless, even medieval in feeling. A quiet tucking in as the family comes home brings the city back to the present and familiar. Urban life after dark shines and glows in this book, with a texture and depth to the rough-hewn illustrations that will charm city-dwellers and country kids alike. Ages 3-6. (September)