The Clever Stick by ProQuest

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Lempke reviews The Clever Stick written and illustrated by John Lechner.

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									November/December 2009                                                 655


having snowball fights, and building a snowman. In the end, the boy
mentions spring, and the sight of a tiny snowdrop sends Jack Frost
packing—for now (“See you next winter!”). Kohara deals deftly with the
inevitability of change, the natural progression of the seasons repre-
senting not only what is lost but also what else may be just around the
corner. It’s a bittersweet theme, but the lighthearted delivery leaves
readers feeling optimistic. As in Ghosts in the House!, the limited-palette
illustrations are composed of the simplest shapes and lines, here
enhanced with swirls of motion (check out Jack’s shoes), mottled-
background snowfall, and a few perfectly formed snowflakes. The
child-friendly pictures tell much of the story, displaying the little boy’s
emotional ups and downs in addition to the warmth of wintertime fun
as enjoyed by two high-spirited friends. elissa gershowitz

John Lechner The Clever Stick; illus. by the author
  32 pp. Candlewick 7/09 isbn 978-0-7636-3950-1 $14.99
  (Preschool, Primary)
In this uplifting fable, a clever stick longs to express himself but, mute,
can’t find a way to make his thoughts understood. Discouraged, he
drags himself home and discovers that the lines he creates in the sand
make shapes and even pictures. The frog, chipmunks, birds, and other
creatures who couldn’t hear him before watch enraptured as he puts
into his picture
								
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