cover image Twilight


Holly Young Huth. Atheneum Books, $16 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-689-81975-9

Using Manhattan's dramatic skyline as a backdrop, McPhail (Mole Music) dips his brush in nightfall's soft shades for Huth's (The Son of the Sun and the Daughter of the Moon) fantasy tale of a self-proclaimed ""keeper of twilight."" As dusk approaches, a girl and her mother stroll the city streets, and the girl announces to everyone she meets, ""It's twilight!"" When the big moment finally arrives, heralded by a sky that is ""not a color you could say, but it was soft,"" she takes flight. In the dreamy sequence that follows, she helps the day stars prepare to shine, reads the sun a bedtime story and persuades the moon to rise, arriving back on the sidewalk by her mother just as nighttime descends. (""She wasn't in charge of that,"" the story concludes wryly.) Huth's poetic language soars alongside her heroine; with a nod to Dylan Thomas she describes the sun ""tucking itself in under the woolly hills"" and city lights that ""sparkle all at once like a thousand dressed-up stars."" McPhail takes full advantage of New York's unmistakable landmarks and the widened perspective of the airborne journey, as the heroine swoops up past the tip of the Chrysler Building and hovers above the Statue of Liberty. Swoony colors pave the way to slumber--from the plum-colored endpapers to the faded blues, greens and pinky lavenders that seem to emanate from the sun's fading rays. Ages 3-8. (Oct.)