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Forever Young Hardcover – September 23, 2008

83 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Dylan's 1974 anthem unfolds as a series of vignettes following the growth of a musician/activist (his clean-cut blondness is a far cry from the scruffiness of the real Dylan). May you grow up to be righteous,/ May you grow up to be true finds the hero fist-bumping an African-American school chum; May you have a strong foundation/ When the winds of changes shift captures him on the front lines of a peace demonstration. Rogers's line drawings may surprise admirers of his Jazz ABZ: the chilly rendering style and the flat, digitally manipulated compositions recall 1960s low-budget animation. The key to this book's likeliest audience, however, rests in the many visual shout-outs to Dylan's career (they're all explained in an endnote). DA Pennebaker can be seen filming the peace march, while Edie Sedgwick, Joan Baez and other hipster icons are among the marchers; another spread depicts the Greenwich Village clubs where Dylan played in the 1960s, and throws in references to both Lay, Lady, Lay (a big brass bed glimpsed through a window) and the cover of the 1963 album The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan. Baby boomers will have a blast decoding it all. All ages. (Sept.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From School Library Journal

Kindergarten-Grade 4—Rogers has fashioned Dylan's 1973 song into an homage to the musician and to coming of age in the 1960s. Adults familiar with the songwriter's life and albums will recognize images in the artwork that recall the period. For those who miss these references, a page-by-page explanation of the visual clues is appended. Most children will feel that the text reads like a blessing spoken by an adult to a growing boy. The illustrations show a street musician giving his guitar to a Caucasian child. He learns to play it and becomes friends with an African-American boy. The two eventually form their own street band, travel the country in a VW bug, and participate in rallies to save the planet and stop the war. The story comes full circle as the young man passes his guitar on to a girl at song's end. Some of the images will be confusing to those who don't read the back matter; e.g., the sticker on the guitar case that reads, "This machine kills Fascists" is a Woody Guthrie reference. A pleasant but additional purchase that will give baby boomers an opportunity to wax nostalgic about "the good old days" with their grandkids.—Martha Simpson, Stratford Library Association, CT
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 and up
  • Grade Level: Kindergarten and up
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers; stated first edition edition (September 23, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1416958088
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416958086
  • Product Dimensions: 11 x 0.3 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (83 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #47,931 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Richard Wells on September 20, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a sweet little book that takes the lyrics from one of Dylan's gentler songs, and attaches them to a story of treating people with love and respect, and following your dream. The illustrations are filled with enough in- jokes from Dylan's life and lyrics to give adult fans something to look for, and straightforward enough for the little ones. The book is no big deal, but not everything has to be. It's probably great for the kids, and for the adult Dylan collector, it fits right next to "Man Gave Names to All the Animals."
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By nray on October 23, 2008
Format: Hardcover
As a rabid Bob Dylan fan, it was important to share my love of his work with my children. I feel so lucky to have found this book! The illustrations are brilliantly executed and richly textured, suiting the lyrical content of the book perfectly. My kids can't get enough of it, and love to look at the pictures while I play the song for them on vinyl. This book is a wonderful way to bridge generations and an easy, fun bedtime tuck-in book. I highly recommend it!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Leslie G. Knibbs on January 19, 2009
Format: Hardcover
When I first read Forever Young, my four year old son was sitting on my lap. From the first page, both he and I were into this magical work. Bob's gift is now in the hands of a new generation...works like this ensure his place in history. His words and music will live forever in the hearts of all people. He is blessed with a gift of reason, insight and the ability to get it to the people in words and music; now, with this book, he has embraced the very young. Forever young is a book for everyone. Leslie Knibbs
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Paul Allaer TOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 25, 2008
Format: Hardcover
As pretty big Dylan fan, I admit I was not aware of this book, but then one day recently I saw this in my local library and of course picked it up immediately. The book was in the kids section of the library, I might add, and I only happen to see it by chance, walking by (my kids are grown and out of the house). I was quite intrigued.

"Forever Young" (40 pages) brings in essence 15 large illustrations (each spread over 2 pages) that illustrate certain aspects of Bob Dylan's life and songs, and it is a delight to look at. The book is obviously intended for young kids, to be read along with their parents, and to be introduced to the world (or at least certain aspects) that Dylan experienced in the early years. But for us adults, this book becomes a "Where's Walda" in a way, in that the illustrations contain a lot of "clues" as to Dylan songs and the sixties and seventies era. Illustrator Paul Rogers was kind enough to provide a summary guide of sorts at the end, explaining the illustrations, but emphasizing that he didn't explain all the clues, and to look for more in the illustrations. Nicely done.

In all, this is a welcome addition to the wealth of Bob Dylan books out there, in a very surprising and endearing kind of way. Highly recommended for adults and younger ones alike!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Andrea Z on May 8, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is wonderful! The illustrations are beautiful and the message is soulfully appropriate for any child, boy or girl, regardless of age. The book is an illustration of Bob Dylan's song, Forever Young. The song is a beautiful blessing:

May God bless and keep you always,
May your wishes all come true,
May you always do for others
And let others do for you.
May you build a ladder to the stars
And climb on every rung,
May you stay forever young,
Forever young, forever young,
May you stay forever young.

May you grow up to be righteous,
May you grow up to be true,
May you always know the truth
And see the lights surrounding you.
May you always be courageous,
Stand upright and be strong,
May you stay forever young,
Forever young, forever young,
May you stay forever young.

May your hands always be busy,
May your feet always be swift,
May you have a strong foundation
When the winds of changes shift.
May your heart always be joyful,
May your song always be sung,
May you stay forever young,
Forever young, forever young,
May you stay forever young.

The artwork is beautiful to look at, so well done, and the book itself shows the work in vivid detail. It's definitely a high-quality keepsake.

The back of the book talks a bit about Bob Dylan's life and the author goes thru each illustration and points out the meaning behind some of the details on each page. He also says that if we listen to Dylan's music, we will discover more information creatively tucked away into each page. This allows for discovery and learning (for a bit older child). How marvelous, lovely and fun!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on January 7, 2009
Format: Hardcover
This is a good book, It would have been a great buy IF the authors CD/DVD had been available together or seperately
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Steve Ramm TOP 100 REVIEWER on October 19, 2008
Format: Hardcover
The one major thing missing from this book is SOUND. Like similar books for children on jazz that I have reviewed, this calls out for a CD with recording of the song but obviously Sony/BMG isn't licensing it to Simon and Schuster.

The illustrations are nicely done and in the back, the author explains the relevance of the images in the pictures, like the sticker on Woody Guthrie's guitar. These "footnotes" really help because otherwise you wouldn't recognize folks like John Hammond, Ringo Starr and Jack Kerouac in the illustrations.

Dylan fans will want this for their collection (especially those collecting his "early years". But I can't see someone not already into Dylan needing this book.

Steve Ramm
"Anything Phonographic"
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