Wednesday, March 7, 2012

A Review of Candlewick Press, Part I

   Candlewick Press began publishing in 1991.  According to their website, Candlewick Press is owned and operated by their employees.  They are the fastest growing and largest independent publisher in the world and produce "the highest-quality books possible".
   According to Ronda Levine, eHow Contributor, Candlewick Press publishes close to 200 books annually.  However out of 200 only ten are by author newbies.  Don't send a manuscript, send a query letter.   How to publish with Candlewick Press
   I'll be critiqueing 3 books published by Candlewick.  They are:
AMAZING MONTY by Johanna Hurwitz
MY DAD'S A BIRDMAN by David Almond

Summary:  AMAZING MONTY is about a first grader and the world he lives in.  Monty (mc) has asthma.  This is addressed in the book by the circumstances Monty is in and by his actions.  In the story, we learn Monty can't have pets with fur because of his asthma.  He is involved with losing his first tooth, acquiring 2 pet parakeets, and wondering what gift to give his not yet born baby sister.

  • Hardcover: 112 pages
  • Publisher: Candlewick; 1 edition (July 13, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0763641545
  • ISBN-13: 978-0763641542

  • Editor or Publishing Errors: NONE

    My Review:
    The story starts slow, but is interesting.  The characters are sweet.  Everyone is perfect.  The story flows smoothly, but it's too long to hold a first grader's attention.  (I fell asleep.)  I liked the illustrations by Anik McGrory. They are in black and white and have a soft delicate sense about them.
    Integrity Books for Boys
    This is another nice book from Johanna Hurwitz. Monty is certainly a character that boys can relate to and grow with especially if they too have asthma. All the adults in the book are kind and helpful. The kids are respectful to their parents and other adults.

     Kids Reads
    AMAZING MONTY is a charming entry in this early chapter book series. Author Johanna Hurwitz does a fine job of incorporating adventures to which young readers can relate...Although there are a few "awwww" moments, such as when Monty gives a gift to the impending sibling and when he meets her, the storytelling is refreshingly unsentimental. Adorable illustrations augment a thoroughly enjoyable story. Review by Terry  Miller Shannon