In a California garden on a rainy night, Cricket feels small and worthless. He hops up some steps and finds himself in a place filled with light and warmth and a tall, sparkling tree. He begins to sing but is scared into silence by two voices, one big and one small. It is then that he makes a marvelous discovery. Eve Bunting's text is filled with her customary tenderness and charm, and Timothy Bush has captured its mood in his luminous illustrations. Together they create a memorable holiday book about a cricket who discovers that though he may be small, he is not insignificant.
A cricket who feels "small and worthless in the bigness of night" finds his way into a cheery house and onto a Christmas tree, where his song is mistaken by a child for the voice of an angel. Bunting (see also The Bones of Fred McFee, under "Halloween," and One Candle, under "Hanukkah"), relates this affectionate tale in taut prose, and Bush's cricket's-eye-view watercolors seem almost to glow. In the end, as Cricket gazes at his reflection in the face of a shiny angel ornament, he ponders an adult's comment that angels sing "in the voices of crickets," then realizes that "he was small, then. But not worthless." The cricket's progression from the darkness of night to the luminosity of the revelatory scene underscores his growing sense of wonder. Ages 3-7. (Oct.) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
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Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
August 01, 2010
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