Wednesday, May 11, 2016

The Sound of all Things by Myron Uhlberg - NO

Uhlerg, Myron The Sound of all Things Peachtree, 2016. $17.95 PICTURE BOOK
This is the story of a young boy growing up in Brooklyn, New York in the 1930’s. Both his parents are deaf but he is not. His father frequently asks him to describe the sound of things, which annoys him, mostly because he can’t think of the right words to describe complex sounds. They go on a rollercoaster, walk through a crowded city and more. Finally the boy decides to go to the library for help.
I think the idea of trying to have students experience a point of view that is challenging to conceptualize, like being deaf or explaining sound to a deaf person, is both fascinating and worth exploring. But this book doesn’t quite fit the bill for me, especially because it has more of a memoir feel, the kind of personal family history that is more relevant to the family than to the general public. Even when the boy does find a beautiful poem to share with his father, it still has sounds in it, which the students may find very confusing and not at all a satisfying ending. The illustrations are dark and kind of grimy looking, they would not be easy to share with a group.
EL(K-3), EL - NO Reviewer: Stephanie Elementary School Librarian & Author.

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