A New York Year by Tania McCartney and Tina Snerling (EK Books)
Reviewed by Elizabeth Vercoe
Tania McCartney is something of a goddess when it comes to picture books and this latest offering confirms that she is still worthy of the title. Her crown is firmly wedged on.
We are Madison, Alexander, Fabian, Sofia, and Jayla – and we’re ready to take you on a journey through twelve months in the life of New York’s kids.
So begins A New York Year. To open this book is to be greeted by dozens of tiny vignettes in Snerling’s distinctive, colourful illustration style. These endpapers alone will have children (and adults) meandering happily for several minutes.
Set out as a month by month prospect, the reader is introduced to the characters and invited to follow individual children through their New York lives and seasons. It is dynamic and varied – with no actual ‘narrative’ as such, but rather a clever and current design which allows the reader to wander in their own direction, through a whole new and exciting world.
A New York Year is a book for poring over by alone or for sharing with a cuddle. It’s a book for throwing down on the couch while you run to Dad’s old DVD collection to return triumphantly clasping ‘Groundhog Day’. Or it’s a book that will elicit dinner time discussion about snowmen in our summer, and inspire wider conversations around the delights of challah or the meaning of the Statue of Liberty.
Geography, history, festivals, cultural difference, acceptance, inclusion, facts and figures – all are covered in this very entertaining and educational offering.