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Mister Orange Hardcover – January 29, 2013
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Mr. Orange, as adults might guess who see the American cover (the Dutch cover looks completely different, as is often the case), is none other than the famous Dutch artist Piet Mondrian, who has moved to New York to escape the repressive political environment in Europe. With Linus' older brother off at the war, Linus inherits his grocery delivery route, and, unable to remember his customer's foreign name, dubs him Mr. Orange because of his twice monthly delivery of a box of oranges. The two strike up an unusual friendship, as Mr. Orange shares with Linus his unusual perspective on life. We learn, for example, how he attempted to capture in his work the raw energy of both boogie-woogie music and New York.
At home, Linus' family anxiously awaits word from Linus' brother Alfie, and each letter is eagerly devoured. At first, the war seems like something out of his brother's beloved super-hero comic books, with his brother the hero, until Linus reads part of a despairing letter that his parents tried to keep from him. As the real horrors of war hit home, Linus grows and changes as well.Read more ›
Throughout this coming-of-age story, the reader explores the world of Linus Muller, a young boy whose brother was recently shipped off to fight the Nazi's. With his big brother leaving to fight, Linus is forced to fill his shoes. As Linus begins to take on his roles, he meets a man with an unusual name. Due to the large shipment of oranges the man receives, he decides to call him Mister Orange. Mister Orange opens his eyes up to new possibilities through art and gives him a different perspective on the world. When looking through his older brother's sketch book, Linus discovers an imaginary super hero that he begins to see and talk to. After receiving letters from his brother about the cruelty of war, he questions his values. With the help of Mister Orange, Linus is able to work through the changes going on in the world and to find a balance.
I believe many children would enjoy reading this book, because the characters are very relatable. I would recommend this books for grades seventh through tenth, especially those who enjoy art and comics! My personal favorite part of the novel was how the author intertwined history and art and based the novel off of real people and events. This book was very enticing and enjoyable!
Review By Grace P., Age 14, Mensa 76