cover image This Is Tap! Savion Glover Finds His Funk

This Is Tap! Savion Glover Finds His Funk

Selene Castrovilla, illus. by Laura Freeman. Holiday House, $18.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-8234-3863-1

Dance-like energy pervades this picture book biography of American performer Savion Glover (b. 1973). Born “with a beat./ ...Pulsin’./ Poundin’./ Demandin’/ to be free,” Glover became invested in rhythm at a young age, starting drum class at age four, beginning tap lessons at age seven, and starring on Broadway by age 10. But even after taking on a successful stage show, European tour, and film, he felt “restless./ Tired of the/ same steps” and of dancing to others’ beats. Finally, at a hip-hop club, Glover found a groove that would let him “respect the past/ while definin’ the moment”—and prepared a visionary return to the Broadway stage. Castrovilla’s prominently onomatopoeic verse dances through rhythmic variations, while Freeman’s kinetic, saturated illustrations use pale emanata to echo movement across the protagonist and diverse secondary cast. The verse telling sometimes focuses on Glover’s exploration of sound and rhythm over biographical details, but it solidly accentuates the emotional arc of his career. An afterword and bibliography conclude. Ages 4–8. (Mar.)