Archive for ‘Modern Fantasy’

May 24, 2011

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs

Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs
Author: Judi Barrett
Illustrator: Ron Barrett
Copyright 1978 Simon & Schuster
ISBN: 978-0689707490
Genre: Modern Fantasy

One quality of a great children’s picture book is the ability for the reader to find meaning solely by looking at the illustrations.  In Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, the reader enters a world in which food falls from the sky and the townspeople don’t have any idea how to cook.  Through the illustrations of this book, the reader can understand the setting, see the problem of food storms build, and notice how the townspeople come to a conclusion.  With excellent detail and a unique artistic approach, Barrett draws readers of all ages into a fun and thought-provoking story.

May 24, 2011

Matilda

Matilda
Author: Roald Dahl
Illustrator: Quentin Blake
Copyright 1988 Puffin Books
ISBN: 978-0142410370
Genre: Modern Fantasy

Matilda is a delightful tale about an extraordinary young girl with a very strong intellect.  Although this would seem to benefit a child, Matilda’s family is unappreciative, and sometimes even unaware, of her capabilities.  They are rude to her and often treat her as though she does not exist.  After beginning school at which a horrid mean woman serves as principal, Matilda discovers that she has even more capabilities that reach beyond those that might be expected.  Throughout the book, the style of language and dialogue used by Matilda and the other characters draws the reader in and make it very difficult at times to put the book down.  It is an excellent story for the young reader!

May 19, 2011

Monster Mama

Monster Mama
Author: Liz Rosenberg
Illustrator: Stephen Gammell
Copyright 1993 by The Putnam & Grosset Group
ISBN: 9-780-69811429-6
Genre: Modern Fantasy

In Monster Mama, the author Liz Rosenberg presents characters with whom the reader can personally identify.  Stephen Gammell’s inventive illustrations only add to the eerie feeling of the introduction and help build apprehension as the reader reaches the story’s climax.  Although a modern fantasy, this story presents talking points for classroom teachers that can help students relate to real-life situations such as bullying, self-concept, and confidence.  This piece of children’s literature is absolutely high-quality, but even if it were only used for the purpose of demonstrating new and creative ways to illustrate text, it has most certainly served its purpose.