Thursday, October 8, 2015

A Very Special House by Ruth Krauss; pictures by Maurice Sendak (1953)

I loved the last two Krauss/Sendak collaborations I read; but oh brother, was this one unsatisfying.  The story is long on longness and short on anything interesting to say; the illustrations seem like cocktail napkin doodles turned into a picture book (I guess there is this Harold and the purple crayon thing going on, but the color scheme wasn't purple or fun). Talent, I guess, is a thing of peaks and valleys; this is a valley for sure.

A Very Special HouseA Very Special House by Ruth Krauss
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

Talent comes in peaks and valleys, I guess, and this is valley for Sendak and Krauss.  It's long on longness, and short on anything interesting.  I suppose there is some sort of Harold and the purple crayon going on here, but the crayon in this case is a mustard yellow of incredible ugliness and produces passable cocktail napkin doodles.  But not much story.  Too bad.

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Jesus, I just realized this was a Caldecott Honor book.  The winner that year was The Biggest Bear by Lynd Ward, a book I've never actually read, but always looks dull as hell.  I guess it was a dull year all around.

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