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Going North (Bccb Blue Ribbon Picture Book Awards (Awards)) Hardcover – August 26, 2004
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Top Customer Reviews
This book has beautiful language and is written like poetry. It has personification like "the road whispers the tires mumble.....good night , good night , good night," This book also has alliteration like " I hear the tires bumping, beating out good bye, good bye, good bye." It also has repetition like "Looking and looking until I finally see. Here is an other example of repetition: "Be brave, be brave, be brave we're together." The lesson I learned from this book was to stay together no matter what.
This book is appropriate for readers in grades 3 – 5, who are beginning to move away from egocentrism and beginning to be able to see things from others’ perspectives. It is set in the segregated South of the 1960s. This is conveyed both in text, with statements like, “Can’t stop just anywhere./Only the Negro stations,/only the Negro stores,” and with images of the African American family staying in their car at a gas station while a white family’s car is serviced by a white attendant. Jessie, the narrator, is the only character who is very well developed. Because she is telling the story, we get a sense of her own fears and hopes. Despite its focus on racial tensions, the book manages to avoid stereotypical portrayals.
The rich language conveys powerful images such as “I wish my toes were roots./I’d grow into a pin oak and never go away.” The language uses literal descriptions, onomatopoeia, and metaphor. Phrases such as “good luck,” with the first word in the phrase in larger print than the second, imitate the sounds of tires on a road. The themes of memory and movement are conveyed through the misty quality of the oil painting illustrations and the multiple perspectives of the yellow station wagon as it heads north. Jessie’s concerns, such as whether she will like her new home and if she will have much in common with the children there, are common to many children as they move to a new city.Read more ›