Saturday, October 1, 2011

Subway Story Reviews

Subway Story has received some very nice early reviews -

from Kirkus:

Jessie weighs 75,122 pounds and is a beautiful, brand-new subway car.
She was brought to New York in the early 1960s for the World’s Fair, and she loves traveling all over the city. She speeds around curves and ducks under rivers. When musicians practice on board, she accompanies them with deep rumbles and toe-tapping clacks. Over the years, there are many changes, but Jessie never forgets her most important job—helping people travel safely. Until one season, sleek, shiny new silver trains start taking over the tracks. A downcast Jessie sits in a dusty yard, poignantly wondering about the people she had carried. “Did they notice she was gone?” Thankfully, her adventure doesn’t end there. She is taken to the Atlantic and sunk to become an artificial reef, home to many barnacles, coral and fish. Sarcone-Roach cleverly brings the story full circle: Jessie was once an integral part of a bustling city, and now a whole city lives inside of her. With sprawling landscapes and vast underground tunnels as a backdrop, readers will cheer Jessie’s story of revival. The author's acrylics gently anthropomorphize Jessie, giving her headlight-eyes and a winsome smile.
Immensely readable and surprisingly touching, this large heft of metal totes a lot of charm. (author’s note, bibliography, further reading) (Picture book. 3-6)

from School Library Journal:

This story of “Jessie,” a subway car built in the early 1960s, was inspired by the author’s trip to the New York Transit Museum and is a lovely tribute to the city and its boroughs. Told in a clever biographical format, the story begins with Jessie’s “birth” details: weight, length, etc. The shiny, new car takes her responsibilities seriously as she safely carries children to school, adults to work, and friends and family members to visit one another. As the decades pass, Jessie delivers visitors to the 1964 World’s Fair in Queens, is covered in graffiti, then painted red, repaired, and refurbished, including air-conditioning to replace outdated fans. Eventually, she is retired and becomes part of an artificial reef in the Atlantic Ocean, where she assumes her new job. The expressive acrylic illustrations set the tone and give the story depth. The features on the front of the subway car are used to make Jessie’s eyes, nose, and mouth. An author’s note gives details about the history of subway cars around the world. This title will be appreciated by train buffs and those curious about the history of New York City.
–Anne Beier, Clifton Public Library, NJ

Thanks to Anne Beier, School Library Journal, and Kirkus Reviews!

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