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Title: Arthur's Eyes
Author: Marc Talon Brown
Publisher: Little, Brown & Company
Date Published: February 1986
Synopsis For children ages 4 to 8. His friends tease Arthur when he gets glasses, but he soon learns to wear them with pride.
Expert Commentary From Publisher's Weekly: Arthur faces two different problems in these books. In the first one, he can't see so he has to get glasses, but he gets teased. So he quits wearing the glasses, which makes his problem even worse. Finally Arthur's teacher shows him how to be proud of his glasses. In the second story, Arthur's cold makes him self-conscious about his nose. He goes to a rhinologist to get a new nose, but his own is the only nose that looks right. (4-8)
From Our Editors: Arthur the aardvark is having trouble with his eyes - he needs glasses! When he wears glasses to school everybody teases him. He tries to lose the glasses, but this leads to some embarrassing situations - such as when he enters the girls' bathroom. Arthur decides he's better off wearing his glasses after all. This early adventure in the popular Arthur series skillfully handles a difficult situation.
Title: Arthur's Nose
Author: Marc Talon Brown
Publisher: Little, Brown & Company
Date Published: February 1986
For children ages 4 to 8.
From Publisher's Weekly: Arthur faces two different problems in these books. In this book, Arthur's cold makes him self-conscious about his nose. He goes to a rhinologist to get a new nose, but his own is the only nose that looks right. (4-8)
Title: Autobiography of a Face
Author: Lucy Grealy
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers, Incorporated
Date Published: March 2003
Synopsis At age 9, Lucy Grealy was diagnosed with a potentially terminal cancer. When she returned to school with a third of her jaw removed, she faced the cruel taunts of classmates who harassed and humiliated her. In this breathtaking memoir, Grealy tells her story of great suffering with remarkable strength and considerable wit.
Reviews and Commentary
This Book was reviewed by: Publisher's Weekly, Library Journal, A.G. Mojtabai - The New York Times Book Review, Sonia Jaffe Robbins - Women's Review of Books, The Readers Catalog, The Publisher and Our Bargain Book Editors
From Publisher's Weekly: Diagnosed at age nine with Ewing's sarcoma, a cancer that severely disfigured her face, Grealy lost half her jaw, recovered after two and half years of chemotherapy and radiation, then underwent plastic surgery over the next 20 years to reconstruct her jaw. This harrowing, lyrical autobiographical memoir, which grew out of an award-winning article published in Harper's in 1993, is a striking meditation on the distorting effects of our culture's preoccupation with physical beauty. Extremely self-conscious and shy, Grealy endured insults and ostracism as a teenager in Spring Valley, N.Y. At Sarah Lawrence College in the mid-1980s, she discovered poetry as a vehicle for her pent-up emotions. During graduate school at the University of Iowa, she had a series of unsatisfying sexual affairs, hoping to prove she was lovable. No longer eligible for medical coverage, she moved to London to take advantage of Britain's socialized medicine, and underwent a 13-hour operation in Scotland. Grealy now lives in New York City. Her discovery that true beauty lies within makes this a wise and healing book. (Sept.)
From Library Journal: When Grealy was nine years old, a toothache led to a visit to the dentist, several misdiagnoses, and eventually surgery that removed most of the right side of her jaw. What she had was Ewing Sarcoma, a deadly form of cancer. In this expansion of her award-winning Harper's essay, "Mirrorings," Grealy sensitively recounts the chemotherapy she endured and the more than 30 operations she underwent in an effort to reconstruct her jaw. For Grealy, the tragedy of her situation was not the cancer but the pain of feeling ugly. As a child, she suffered the cruel taunts of classmates and insensitive stares of adults (Halloween was a great liberator with its concealing masks); as a young woman, fearing that no one would love her, she pinned her hopes on the surgeries that would magically fix her disfigured face and her life. Grealy writes with a poet's lyric grace, but her account of her endless quest for beauty at times becomes repetitious; the most moving part of her memoir comes in her depiction of chemotherapy's agonies and the unintentional cruelty of parents telling their suffering child not to cry. For all collections.-Wilda Williams, ``Library Journal''
From The Reader's Catalog: Of her disfigurement from cancer treatment, Grealy writes: "I've spent fifteen years being treated for nothing other than looking different from everyone else. It was the pain from that, from feeling ugly, that I'd always viewed as the great tragedy in my life. The fact that I had cancer seemed minor in comparison"
From The Publisher: Lucy Grealy's ruthless self-examination, rich fantasy life, and great derring-do inform this powerful memoir about the premium we put on beauty and on a woman's face in particular. It took Lucy twenty years of living with a distorted self-image and more than thirty reconstructive procedures before she could come to terms with her appearance after childhood surgery left her jaw disfigured. As a young girl she absorbed the searing pain of peer rejection and the guilty pleasures of wanting to be special. Later she internalized the paralyzing fear of never being loved. Heroically and poignantly, she learned to define herself from the inside out. This memoir arrives at a time when the worship of beauty in our culture is at an all-time high, a time when more and more women seek physical perfection. Lucy Grealy awakens in us the difficult truth that beauty, finally, is to be found deep within.
From Our Bargain Book Editors:
After a childhood illness & surgery left her jaw disfigured, it took the author 20 years of living with a distorted self-image & more than 30 reconstructive procedures before coming to terms with her appearance. A poignant, powerful, & ultimately liberating memoir.
Author: Ben Brink
Publisher: Lerner Pub
Date Published: August 1996
Synopsis Explains what happens to a boy who has an operation to correct the problems with his face caused by birth defects.
Expert Commentary From The Horn Book, Inc.: Seven-year-old David prepares for, undergoes, and recovers from surgery to reconfigure his eye and nose. The text is likely to raise questions as it does not fully explain this unusual surgery to correct a birth defect. The color photographs, which include one with David's skin sliced open, are of inconsistent quality. Bib., glos.
From School Library Journal: Gr 3-5When David was born, his eyes were too far apart and his nose was misaligned, making it difficult for him to breathe. Now seven years old, he is examined by a team of specialists and later admitted to the hospital. The description of the surgery is detailed and fascinating, and the full-color photos are excellent in conveying the care and skill involved in such delicate surgery. While this is a well-organized and well-written look at a child's hospital experience, it won't be useful as an addition to going-to-the-hospital collections, as very few children will ever go through such a radical procedure (having an eye bolted into place and a new nostril made). It's a fine book and will not frighten young readers, but be advised that it's not a let's-have-ice-cream-after-our-tonsillectomy story. Christine A. Moesch, Buffalo & Erie County Public Library, NY
Title: Rough-Face Girl
Author: Rafe Martin ,David Shannon (Illustrator)
Publisher: Putnam Pub
Date Published: April 199
Synopsis For children ages 5 to 8. In an Algonquin village by the shores of Lake Ontario, many young women have tried to win the affections of the powerful Invisible Being who lives with his sister in a great wigwam near the forest. Then came the Rough-Face girl, scarred from working by the fire. Can she succeed where her beautiful, cruel sisters have failed? Size D. 32 pp.
This Book was reviewed by: Publisher's Weekly, The Horn Book, Inc., School Library Journal, Debra Briatico - Children's Literature and Betsy Hearne - Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
From Publisher's Weekly: In this Algonquin Indian version of the Cinderella story, two domineering sisters set out to marry the ``rich, powerful, and supposedly handsome'' Invisible Being, first having to prove that they can see him. They cannot, but their mistreated younger sister the Rough-Face Girl--so called because the sparks from the fire have scarred her skin--can, for she sees his ``sweet yet awesome face'' all around her. He then appears to her, reveals her true hidden beauty and marries her. Shannon ( How Many Spots Does a Leopard Have? ) paints powerful, stylized figures and stirring landscapes, heightening their impact with varied use of mist, shadows and darkness. His meticulous research is evident in intricate details of native dress and lodging. In places, though, he struggles with the paradox of illustrating the invisible--an eagle, tree, cloud and rainbow form the face of the Invisible Being in one disappointingly banal image. For the most part, however, the drama of these haunting illustrations--and of Martin's ( Foolish Rabbit's Big Mistake ) respectful retelling--produce an affecting work. Ages 4-8. (Apr.)
From The Horn Book, Inc.: In this powerful retelling of a Native-American Cinderella story, the Rough-Face Girl, the youngest of three daughers, is so named because years of tending the fire have scarred her face and arms. She earns the love of and the right to marry the powerful Invisible Being by seeing him in the beauty of the earth around her. The text contains the cadences and rhythms of oral language, and the illustrations, dark and vivid, use earth tones and shadows to convey the drama.
From School Library Journal: Gr 3 Up-- Simply, in the words of an oral storyteller, Martin retells an Algonquin folktale. The youngest of three sisters is forced by the other two to sit by the fire and feed the flames, which results in the burning and scarring of her hair and skin. Desirous of marriage to an Invisible Being who lives in a huge wigwam across the village, these cruel siblings must prove to his sister that they have seen him, but they fail. The Rough-Face Girl, however, sees the Invisible Being everywhere and can answer his sister's questions correctly. Comparable in presentation to Caroline Cunningham's ``The Little Scarred One'' from The Talking Stone (Knopf, 1939; o.p.; reprinted in Castles and Dragons , Crowell, 1958; o.p.), but different in detail, this is a splendid read-aloud. It is the only single illustrated version available. Shannon's finely crafted full- and double-page acrylic paintings in the rich hues of the earth embody the full flavor of the story. His stunning cover portrait shows at one glance both the girl's beauty and her frightful scars. Another in the recent succession of Cinderella stories, The Rough-Face Girl begs for comparison with Princess Furball (Greenwillow, 1989), Tattercoats (Putnam, 1989), Mufaro's Beautiful Daughters (Lothrop, 1987), Moss Gown (Clarion, 1987), etc., and will provide both entertainment and a cultural lesson.-- Susan Scheps, Shaker Heights Public Library, OH
From Debra Briatico - Children's Literature:
In this Algonquin Indian tale, the Rough-Face Girl is scarred from years of tending the fire for her family. She is mistreated by her sisters, who go on a journey to find and marry the Invisible Being. The Rough-Face Girl desires to meet this mysterious power and decides to embark on her own search. When she meets up with the sister of the Invisible Being, she is put through a test. After she answers all of the questions correctly, she bathes in the lake. While in the water, her scars vanish and she ends up marrying the Invisible Being. Magnificent paintings and moving prose perfectly capture the beauty of the natural world in this Native American version of Cinderella.
Title: Where's Chimpy?
Author: Berniece Rabe,Kathleen Tucker (Editor),Diane Schmidt (Photographer)
Publisher: Albert Whitman & Company
Date Published: December 1991
Synopsis For children ages 4 to 7. "Rabe's simple plot is the vehicle for a joyous, unaffected portrait and Schmidt's full-color, perceptive photos depict naturally the daily life of a captivating little girl and her special dad. Excellent for building awareness and a nice story with warm appeal."--Booklist.
This Book was reviewed by: Publisher's Weekly, School Library Journal, Jan Lieberman - Children's Literature, Linda Olshina - Science Books & Films and Zena Sutherland - Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
From Publisher's Weekly:
The author of The Balancing Girl has written a story about Misty, a girl who is all ready for bed, but has lost her stuffed chimp. Her father helps her retrace the events of her day, but as they return together to the places she played, Misty finds many toys, but not Chimpy. Finally he is found in the bathroom, half-hidden by a towel, and Misty ecstatically hugs him. A logical, well-thought-out story is enlivened by photos of Misty and her father. That Misty is a Down's syndrome child is of no importance to the plot, only explained in a preface and in the author's note at end. Readers will simply see a beaming child playing, bathing and sleeping, and Misty will endear herself to those engaged in her hunt for Chimpy. Ages 2-7. (August)
From School Library Journal:
K-Gr 2 Misty cannot go to bed without her stuffed monkey, Chimpy. She and her father look for it throughout the house and the yard until Chimpy is found at last, under a towel, and Misty finally goes to bed with her toy, after helping her father find his glasses. This is a simple book made different because it is a photographic story and because the little girl has Down syndrome. It thus becomes a photo essay on the fact that children with disabilities can and do enjoy the same things other children do. The full-color photographs are posed to go with the story, showing Misty looking for her animal, playing with her friends, and expressing her feelings. Misty definitely steals the show in the pictures. A brief introduction about Down syndrome is included. This would be a good book to share with children when discussing handicaps, particularly as it shows a disabled child participating in and enjoying regular play instead of concentrating on the differences. Margaret C. Howell, West Springfield Elementary School, Fairfax County, Va.
From Jan Lieberman - Children's Literature:
This is a joyous photo essay of Misty, a little girl with Down syndrome. When she discovers her toy monkey is missing, she and her father recall her day's activities in order to find Chimpy. Misty's day is like all other 4-year-olds. She is irresistible!
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