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Mother Goose's little treasures /

A collection of nursery rhymes featuring such little-known characters as the wee melodie man and Handy Spandy, Mrs. Whirly and little bonny Button-cap. Full description

Other Authors: Opie, Iona Archibald., Wells, Rosemary,
Format: Book
Language: English
Published: Candlewick Press, 2007
Edition: First edition.
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The world's most respected Mother Goose folklorist reunites with one of the great illustrators of our time to present a rare selection of rhymes to share and treasure.

Review by Booklist Review

*Starred Review* In her introduction, Opie notes, If I am Mother Goose's self-appointed treasurer, then Rosemary Wells is definitely her illuminator. Truer words were never spoken. This gem, comprising 22 tidbits from little-known nursery rhymes, shines with the charm of old-time rhymes and with Wells' beloved animal and child characters, set down in her signature style. As with familiar Mother Goose rhymes, the ones here don't always make sense, but they exude syncopated silliness and fun: Mrs. Whirly / Mrs. Whirly sells fish, / Three ha'pence a dish; / Don't buy it, / don't buy it, / It stinks / when you fry it. What's more, the quirky nature of many of the rhymes provides a clean slate for Wells' inspired playfulness. This title joins Opie and Wells' two previous collections, My Very First Mother Goose (1996) and Here Comes Mother Goose (1999), to form a exceptional trilogy, which given that Wallace Tripp's Granfa' Grig Had a Pig (1976) and Arnold Lobel's Gregory Griggs and Other Nursery Rhyme People (1978) are now hard to find will keep Mother Goose's less-familiar rhymes alive. Like Tomie dePaola's Mother Goose (1985), this third Opie-Wells treasury of treasures is likely to become a staple in children's collections.--Cummins, Julie Copyright 2007 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

Opie and Wells depart from their previous two collections of well-known Mother Goose rhymes to venture to what Opie describes as "the far edge of Mother Goose's realm" and there collect "the most mysterious fragments from our shared memory." As if to signal the difference, the trim size has changed (it is smaller, at 9 9) and the paper is matte, not glossy. Despite the large fonts and the continued presence of Wells's signature bunny characters, however, this is less a title for Everytoddler than one for lovers of rhyme and verse. Wells gives the art a more sophisticated look, trading the bright colors and bustling borders of the previous books for a more subdued palette and adding many more human characters. She riffs on designs of classic Mother Goose editions, playing with fonts and narrow frames, and she outdoes herself in ingenious interpretations. One verse beseeches a "chick chick chick chick chicken" to "lay a little egg for me"; Wells depicts a rustically dressed bunny and a chicken in the same room, each on its own telephone, a speech balloon issuing from the bunny's receiver shows a brightly painted egg. An especially fine series of pictures features a human mother, daughter and doll, all identically dressed; sometimes only one of the trio appears, introducing jokes about scale, but the funniest include all three, as in the art for a contradictory poem about a mother who tells her "darling daughter" that yes, she can go swimming as long as she doesn't go near the water (the look on the daughter's face as she wades into a pond is pure imp; the doll, towed in a toy boat, mirrors the girl's expression except for its eyes, which roll angelically heavenward). Sadly, the art suffers in the production-low contrasts leave the watercolors looking washed out. Ages 3-up. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by School Library Journal Review

PreS-This third collection by Opie and Wells includes 22 less-familiar rhymes. According to Opie's introduction, "-the little treasures in this book-are the most mysterious fragments of our shared memory." Some rhymes are silly ("Little old dog sits under a chair,/Twenty-five grasshoppers/snarled in his hair-.") Others are surreal. For example, "Mother, May I?" poses the question, "Mother, may I go out swimming?," which is answered, "Yes, my darling daughter;/Hang your clothes on a hickory limb,/But don't go near the water." Meanwhile, the picture shows a little girl, waist-deep in a pool, pulling a little boat and holding a doll that looks just like the little girl, which does transform this playful verse into something, yes, mysterious. Many of the characters make multiple appearances, and many are Wells's characteristic rabbits and cats. The very nature of this book makes it a less-essential purchase than this team's My Very First Mother Goose (1996) or Here Comes Mother Goose (1999, both Candlewick), so possibly only larger collections or libraries with lots of Rosemary Wells fans will want it.-Lauralyn Persson, Wilmette Public Library, IL (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Iona Margaret Opie was born on October 13, 1923. During World War II, she made meteorological maps in the Women's Auxiliary Air Force. She married Peter Opie in 1943. Together they collected children's rhymes, riddles, and street culture. Their books included I Saw Esau, The Oxford Dictionary of Nursery Rhymes, The Oxford Nursery Rhyme Book, The Lore and Language of Schoolchildren, Children's Games in Street and Playground, and The Classic Fairy Tales.

After her husband's death in 1982, she continued the work alone. Her books included The People in the Playground, Tail Feathers from Mother Goose, Here Comes Mother Goose, A Dictionary of Superstitions, and Children's Games with Things. Her son Robert collaborated with her on The Treasures of Childhood. She was made CBE in 1999. She died on October 23, 2017 at the age of 94.

(Bowker Author Biography)

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