Miss Mary Reporting by Sue Macy

Miss Mary Reporting by Sue Macy

Miss Mary Reporting: The True Story of Sportswriter Mary Garber by Sue Macy, illustrated by C. F. Payne (InfoSoup)

Mary Garber was one of the first female sports journalists in the United States. At a time when women were not newspaper reporters, Mary was a sports reporter. Her big break came during World War II when the men were sent to war. After the war, Mary was moved to a news desk but then a year later permanent came back to sports. She was there to witness Jackie Robinson join the Brooklyn Dodgers. Mary herself was barred from the press box and forced to sit with the coaches’ wives rather than the other reporters until her editor complained. Locker rooms were also a challenge. Mary continued writing about sports for more than 50 years, retiring in 2002. Along the way she garnered awards and honors and a reputation for being fair and unbiased.

Macy captures the story of this groundbreaking woman beautifully. The tone is playful and humble with Garber’s quotes often given credit and thanks to others rather than taking praise for herself. At the same time, one understands the courage it took for Mary to continue doing this job in such a male-dominated field. This story is inspirational in the best possible way.

Payne’s illustrations add to the playful feel of the title and the humor. Mary is shown as very petite, dwarfed by those around her. Yet she is clearly the center of attention on the page, her face lit from within by her big eyes and large glasses. Her short hair and can-do attitude mark her uniquely on the page as well.

A great picture book biography to share with children who enjoy sports or writing. Appropriate for ages 7-9.

Reviewed from copy received from Simon & Schuster.

 

 

There Is a Tribe of Kids by Lane Smith

There Is a Tribe of Kids by Lane Smith

There Is a Tribe of Kids by Lane Smith (InfoSoup)

A boy sets off on a journey alone and encounters all kinds of creatures along the way. There is a tribe of young goats (kids). There is a colony of penguins, a pod of whales, a flight of butterflies, and much more. He also sees different groups of objects like a formation of rocks, a family of stars, and a growth of plants. Finally his journey ends as he meets up with a tribe of children (kids) who wear outfits of leaves just like he does. He is clearly home again.

This book is filled with collective nouns. There is one after another that manage not only to show children the beauty of the language of collective nouns but also move the story ahead. They form into a cohesive journey for our young hero to embark upon. It is a book that only works this well due to the skill of the author.

Smith is of course also a great illustrator and here his illustrations shine. They show a playful magic that is impressive. They are filled with textures that were created by oils being sprayed with acrylic varnish. The result looks like sponge painting and fills the book with space and light.

A masterful look at collective nouns that is also a great read aloud. Appropriate for ages 4-6.

Reviewed from library copy.