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Virginia Wolf Hardcover – March 1, 2012
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* "Drawing inspiration from Virginia Woolf and her sister, Maclear tells the story of two siblings who share a strong bond and creative spirit despite their dissimilar personalities. ... It is the delicacy of the mixed-media illustrations (ink, pencil, watercolor, gouache) that tames the feral Virginia and gives real strength to the story. Parents will enjoy sharing this book with their sometimes 'wolfish' children." --School Library Journal (starred review)
"...an ambitious story about girlish blues, sisterly differences and the healing power of art. ...Isabelle Arsenault, who won a Times Best Illustrated award last year for her work on 'Migrant,' by Maxine Trottier, imaginatively and deliciously depicts a child's inner world." --New York Times
About the Author
Isabelle Arsenault has illustrated several children's books, including Spork, My Letter to the World and Other Poems and Mr. Gaugin's Heart. She has received many awards for her work, including the Governor General's Award for Illustration. She lives in Montreal, Quebec.
Top Customer Reviews
Loosely based on sisters Virginia Woolf and Vanessa Bell, Virginia Wolf tells the tale of a little girl who tries everything she can to pull her sister out of the doldrums. Her gift is an imaginary world, Bloomsberry, painted on the walls, and it works to turn her sister from glum to glad.
This is a multi-layered book that will delight children and adults alike. The adorable characters, raw emotion, and contrasts will appeal to even the youngest child, and the parent reading it aloud will enjoy the references to Woolf's writing, the message about sibling relationships, and the marvelous use of language.
Isabelle Arsenault is a multi-award winning illustrator whose mixed media illustrations add an extra layer to Kyo Maclear's marvelous words. Her use of black and for the ill-tempered wolfish girl and her world contrasts well against the colors of the world when Virginia is happy again. Her art is as much a tribute to the talent of Vanessa Bell as Maclear's stunning language is a tribute to Virginia Woolf.
Highly recommended for any family with a child who has tantrums.
I love that this book has the potential to inspire and guide not only the grumpiest, most wolfish child, but also adults who've also fallen prey to their wolfish tendencies. No matter your age, Vanessa's determination and the beautiful illustrations within Virginia Wolf's pages has the power to inspire and slowly tame the wolf within.
Key Words and Ideas:
Learning to deal with and handle emotion
Using art as an emotional outlet
The illustrations are also very beautiful and mirror the story. Some might say the art alone makes it worth buying. I'd say it delivers everything it implies. Just remember that this is not going to be an accurate biography. It is, after all, targeted at children and teenagers.
Virginia Wolf by Kyo Maclear is something that both my 2 year old and my 7 year old have enjoyed. The illustrations by Isabelle Arsenault are absolutely charming, and the hand lettering is done in D'nealian, which is the handwriting program my son Bruce uses at school.
Virginia Wolf tells the story of two sisters named Virginia and Vanessa. One day, Virginia wakes up in a really sour mood and turns into a wolf. Vanessa spends the rest of the book trying to help her sister choose to feel better. At one point, Bloomsberry is mentioned. When we finally see Virginia's face without the wolf head, she does indeed have a very distinctive looking nose.
This book is similar in merit to When Sophie Gets Angry because it helps children understand "big emotions" and think about socially appropriate ways to handle them. I'm not sure how much either of my kids learned about the real Virginia Woolf, but they are at least going to be familiar with her name and know that sometimes she suffered from really dark moods.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
At first I bought this book for myself. I just couldn't look away from the illustrations but now it has become a classic to me. It's one a reach for often at story time.Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
Love the clear facility of the wordsmith and imaginative whimsy of the illustrator. A perfect marriage! Read morePublished 6 months ago by Mona Kanin
Short yet powerful and touching story of two sisters. Knowing the story is based on real people struggle with depression makes the book even more amazing. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Amazon Customer
My first graders love this book...they can relate to the idea of trying to make a friend who is upset or angry or grumpy feel better.Published on July 3, 2014 by DDO
Me and my little daughter loved the story & the colours & everything. we read ir over and over.
we love it, really.
Very beautiful illustration and a very interesting story. Adults and children will appreciate it. I loved it and recomend it.Published on January 16, 2014 by Angela Maria Bedran
Sisters are grumpy sometimes. Follow the story of one sister who tries everything to cheer her wolf-like grumpy sister. Read morePublished on December 27, 2013 by Vicki