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Cover image for At the crossroads
Format:
Title:
At the crossroads
ISBN:
9780688052706

9780688052713

9780688131036

9780758719973

9780785726364
Edition:
1st ed.
Publication Information:
New York : Greenwillow Books, ©1991 (Hong Kong : South China Printing Company)
Physical Description:
32 unnumbered pages : color illustrations ; 29 cm
Summary:
South African children gather to welcome home their fathers who have been away for several months working in the mines.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader Lower Grade 1.9 0.5 Kilgore Intermediate.
Added Author:
Holds:

Available:*

Library
Call Number
Status
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+ PRESCHOOL - ISADORA
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E ISADORA
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ISADORA
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On Order

Summary

Summary

South African children gather to welcome home their fathers who have been away for several months working in the mines.


Summary

South African children gather to welcome home their fathers who have been away for several months working in the mines.


Author Notes

Rachel Isadora was born and raised in New York City. Rachel studied at the School of American Ballet and was a dancer with the Boston Ballet until a foot injury. She went from being a ballet dancer to an author and illustrator.

The first title she wrote and illustrated was Max. Since then she has written many others including Golden Bear, Ben's Trumpet, Nick Plays Baseball, Caribbean Dream, Mr. Moon and Not Just Tutus.

Her works have earned her several awards including the Caldecott Honor Award and the Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor Award. Her title Max, was named an ALA Notable Book.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Rachel Isadora was born and raised in New York City. Rachel studied at the School of American Ballet and was a dancer with the Boston Ballet until a foot injury. She went from being a ballet dancer to an author and illustrator.

The first title she wrote and illustrated was Max. Since then she has written many others including Golden Bear, Ben's Trumpet, Nick Plays Baseball, Caribbean Dream, Mr. Moon and Not Just Tutus.

Her works have earned her several awards including the Caldecott Honor Award and the Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor Award. Her title Max, was named an ALA Notable Book.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Reviews 10

School Library Journal Review

PreS-Gr 2-- All over the world, children look forward to their parents' return from work. The perspective of this universal anticipation is expanded in this lively portrayal of young children in a South African village eagerly awaiting their fathers' homecoming after ten months of working in the mines. The celebration begins early in the morning, builds throughout the day, and is subdued but sustained until the following dawn when the men finally arrive at the village crossroads. The lifestyle and the setting are observed honestly and sensitively, without romanticism or sensationalism, as adults go about their daily routines and children fashion homemade musical instruments from salvaged scraps. The rhythm and repetition of the simple text evoke the jubilation and expectant mood of the children and reinforce their enthusiasm. Set against finely detailed depictions of village structures and striking landscapes, the expressive, impressionistic portraits of children and adults are best viewed at a distance, but blend beautifully in the perfectly composed watercolor illustrations. A unique glimpse of a familiar situation that is transformed into an extraordinary event through its foreign context, and one that deserves a place in all collections. --Starr LaTronica, North Berkeley Library, CA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Publisher's Weekly Review

In spare, forthright prose, the author of Ben's Trumpet tells the poignant story of a homecoming. For a group of black children living in a South African shanty town, it is a very special day; after working in the mines for 10 months, their fathers are returning home. After school, the youngsters run to the crossroads to wait. Excitedly, they make music on instruments fashioned from wire, sticks and cans. A large group gathers and then gradually disbands as the sun sinks in the sky. But six resolute children wait patiently through the night. Finally, at dawn a rumbling truck appears, bringing the long-awaited fathers. Isadora's watercolors are equally effective--and affecting--depicting the blazing sky at sunset and the expressions on the children's faces, at once hopeful and apprehensive. Ages 4-up. ( May ) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


Horn Book Review

A simple story about a group of black South African children awaiting the homecoming of their fathers, who have been working in distant mines for several months. The situation - a result of apartheid - is a discouraging one, but the text and vivid watercolors focus on the children's excitement and anticipation. From HORN BOOK 1991, (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Kirkus Review

After ten months away in the South African mines, ``our fathers are coming home!'' to a shanty town set on an almost treeless plain. But the focus here is on joy and celebration: telling the other children at school, contriving instruments for a band to be joined by the whole neighborhood, singing and dancing at the crossroads. But it's a long journey home from the mines: the sun goes down, people drift away, and only the original handful of children waits until--at dawn--their fathers finally come. The understated drama of Isadora's quiet, carefully fashioned text blossoms in her freely rendered watercolors, where she conveys the beauty to be found in this shabby town: the rich colors of earth, sky and the surrounding hills; the patterns of fabrics and corrugated metal; the children's eager faces, vibrant with universal feelings. A beautiful, bridge-building book. (Picture book. 4-8)


Booklist Review

Ages 5-8. This story of joyful reunion also reveals the wrenching opposite--the pain of families separated by apartheid. In a simple text with glowing double-spread watercolor paintings, a boy tells how he, his brother and sister, and their friends celebrate the fact that their fathers are coming home after 10 months of working in the mines. Home is a shantytown in the dusty veld, without electricity or running water. Yet despite the hardship, the huddle of shacks is a community. Swirling color, energy, and laughter burst out from the gray, uniform lines of the corrugated iron huts. Isadora has been there, and her sensitive portraits, crowded street scenes, and impressionistic landscapes vividly portray South Africans in their country. Early in the morning people wait at the watertap to fill the buckets they will carry home on their heads. After school they party at the crossroads; the children play improvised instruments and sing over and over again, "Our fathers are coming home!" Then it gets quieter, and the fiery sunset merges with the light and smoke of the township braziers. As darkness falls, only six children stay on at the crossroads. They wait and wait together, through the long, still night, and we feel how they have waited all year. "It's a long way from the mines." Finally, at sunrise, a truck brings the migrant workers home, and the outstretched arms of fathers and children express their pent-up longing. In the intensity of arrival is all their leaving. ~--Hazel Rochman


School Library Journal Review

PreS-Gr 2-- All over the world, children look forward to their parents' return from work. The perspective of this universal anticipation is expanded in this lively portrayal of young children in a South African village eagerly awaiting their fathers' homecoming after ten months of working in the mines. The celebration begins early in the morning, builds throughout the day, and is subdued but sustained until the following dawn when the men finally arrive at the village crossroads. The lifestyle and the setting are observed honestly and sensitively, without romanticism or sensationalism, as adults go about their daily routines and children fashion homemade musical instruments from salvaged scraps. The rhythm and repetition of the simple text evoke the jubilation and expectant mood of the children and reinforce their enthusiasm. Set against finely detailed depictions of village structures and striking landscapes, the expressive, impressionistic portraits of children and adults are best viewed at a distance, but blend beautifully in the perfectly composed watercolor illustrations. A unique glimpse of a familiar situation that is transformed into an extraordinary event through its foreign context, and one that deserves a place in all collections. --Starr LaTronica, North Berkeley Library, CA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Publisher's Weekly Review

In spare, forthright prose, the author of Ben's Trumpet tells the poignant story of a homecoming. For a group of black children living in a South African shanty town, it is a very special day; after working in the mines for 10 months, their fathers are returning home. After school, the youngsters run to the crossroads to wait. Excitedly, they make music on instruments fashioned from wire, sticks and cans. A large group gathers and then gradually disbands as the sun sinks in the sky. But six resolute children wait patiently through the night. Finally, at dawn a rumbling truck appears, bringing the long-awaited fathers. Isadora's watercolors are equally effective--and affecting--depicting the blazing sky at sunset and the expressions on the children's faces, at once hopeful and apprehensive. Ages 4-up. ( May ) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


Horn Book Review

A simple story about a group of black South African children awaiting the homecoming of their fathers, who have been working in distant mines for several months. The situation - a result of apartheid - is a discouraging one, but the text and vivid watercolors focus on the children's excitement and anticipation. From HORN BOOK 1991, (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Kirkus Review

After ten months away in the South African mines, ``our fathers are coming home!'' to a shanty town set on an almost treeless plain. But the focus here is on joy and celebration: telling the other children at school, contriving instruments for a band to be joined by the whole neighborhood, singing and dancing at the crossroads. But it's a long journey home from the mines: the sun goes down, people drift away, and only the original handful of children waits until--at dawn--their fathers finally come. The understated drama of Isadora's quiet, carefully fashioned text blossoms in her freely rendered watercolors, where she conveys the beauty to be found in this shabby town: the rich colors of earth, sky and the surrounding hills; the patterns of fabrics and corrugated metal; the children's eager faces, vibrant with universal feelings. A beautiful, bridge-building book. (Picture book. 4-8)


Booklist Review

Ages 5-8. This story of joyful reunion also reveals the wrenching opposite--the pain of families separated by apartheid. In a simple text with glowing double-spread watercolor paintings, a boy tells how he, his brother and sister, and their friends celebrate the fact that their fathers are coming home after 10 months of working in the mines. Home is a shantytown in the dusty veld, without electricity or running water. Yet despite the hardship, the huddle of shacks is a community. Swirling color, energy, and laughter burst out from the gray, uniform lines of the corrugated iron huts. Isadora has been there, and her sensitive portraits, crowded street scenes, and impressionistic landscapes vividly portray South Africans in their country. Early in the morning people wait at the watertap to fill the buckets they will carry home on their heads. After school they party at the crossroads; the children play improvised instruments and sing over and over again, "Our fathers are coming home!" Then it gets quieter, and the fiery sunset merges with the light and smoke of the township braziers. As darkness falls, only six children stay on at the crossroads. They wait and wait together, through the long, still night, and we feel how they have waited all year. "It's a long way from the mines." Finally, at sunrise, a truck brings the migrant workers home, and the outstretched arms of fathers and children express their pent-up longing. In the intensity of arrival is all their leaving. ~--Hazel Rochman