So I should be honest and say that this review isn t really about this book as much as it is about my disappointment in the Newbery committee s decision This is a nice picture book and it represents all of the underrepresented roups that we re all looking to see in literature for kids It s a sweet earnest thing Maybe a little didactic for my taste The book takes on a big difficult idea And it handles it pretty nicely For a picture book For four year olds Up to eight if you o by the publisher s marketing materials I am a huge believer in the importance of picture books and for the reat ones I don t think there s any limit to the top of the age range I m not prepared to Dark Awakening go that far for this one But REALLY Newbery committee Really The most distinguished contribution to literature for children out of all the books of 2015 ok subject to residency reuirements etc If we want to investigate ideas of community and diversity if we want to find beauty in our surroundings no matter the difficulties we have to overcome certainly we can allow attention than a picture book affords And textual complexity maybe While the Caldecott for Hugo Cabret was a surprise that made sense to me this book just doesn t do what I need a Newbery book to do It doesn t challenge readers to engage with characters or ideas in a profound or extended way Obviously this is all only my opinion but it seems to me that the committee missed an opportunity here Things I love about this book1 So many wonderful child friendly moments raindrops on your nose older kids with nicer stuff than you2 It is set in a diverse neighborhood and city that could be ANY city 3 It is sweet slow and poetic4 Vibrant saturated Keats like illustrations5 An awesomerandmother stylish thoughtful and full of love6 This would be a Hawks Way (Hawks Way great book for a religious setting since it could be seen that it is Grandmother is motivated by her faith to help other in her community BUT it totally does not have to be read like that either7 What areat pairing of author and illustrator A lame ridiculous tale of rose colored Family Men glasses Look kid you are absolutely right You do live in a dump If you want toet out of there and find something better you can Start by not listening to the platitudes Go out and find the truth Hang out with people who will correct your double negatives and your how come we don t Creative Participation got a car kind of talk Pick up some of that trash that is lying on theround instead of just walking on by Beautiful Profound Colorful And AliveThis bookthis book is poetry I loved itLast Stop on Market Street tells the story of a little boy CJ and his Nana riding the bus We meet and experience personalities sounds and smells right along with CJ and his Sabina Spielrein grandmother We see the world out the window on the bus and in the people we meet From raindrops to music to butterflies toraffiti CJ asks and wonders about it all as he makes his way through the city Why this and come that
And his Nana has an answer perfect answers filled with compassion and his Nana has an answer perfect answers filled with compassion and Cognitive Radio Networks grace love every time Pure love How come it s always so dirty over here She smiled and pointed to the sky Sometimes when you re surrounded by dirt CJ you re a better witness for what s beautiful These words and pictures are a celebration of life s littleems Simple pleasures and wonders are captured in colorful pictures and lively words Words that bring the bus ride to life The bus sighed and sagged and lurched CJ skipped ducked and looked Really looked and listened And you will tooThis beautiful story will inspire you to look and listen to the people and places around you To find the beauty around you Never forget to look for the wonder and beauty in you in the people around you and the world I needed a reminder actually Highly recommended I have indeed much enjoyed the back and forth dialogue between young CJ and his Personnel Management in Government grandmother And unlike readers who have been faulting Matt de la Pena for penning their conversations in a non standard American vernacular as a linguist I do much appreciate the representation of language as primarily oral and thus and yes not as universally standardised as this does not only add both colour and authenticity to the narrative of Last Stop on Market Street but importantly it also underlines that ALL language except perhaps certain artificially created lingoes such as Esperanto originally were andenerally still are dialects of multiple variation and that it is in fact these dialects these oral vernaculars that both enable that cause language change language development and evolution and NOT what is Out of This World generally considered the written norm in other words without the various parlances of the peoples there would also not be for example standard written English German French Italian Spanish etcBut while I have definitely enjoyed theeneral narrational set up of Last Stop on Market Street and do appreciate CJ s The Time It Never Rained grandmother pointing out the many positives of his obviously inner city neighbourhood and that being friendly having a social conscience with the two of them taking a bus after church to volunteer at a local soup kitchen areenerally important and essential than material wealth such as owning vehicles iPods and the like I also tend to think that the The Child of the Soul and Other Stories grandmother is at times just a bit too insistent on knowing one s place in society and not striving to achieve Because while I do happen to agree with the message that too much materialism is not all that inherently wonderful therandmother s attitude seems to almost suggest that CJ should not even dare to wish that his family had a car that wanting that desiring an iPod is somehow even very much wrong in and of itself And with that salient latter fact in mind I do and my Childrens Phantasies general enjoyment of the textual presentation of Last Stop on Market Street uite notwithstanding kind of fault Matt de la Pena for verbally hitting us readers over our collective heads with his ideals of anti materialism of seeing beauty even in run down communities and neighbourhoods of. Every Sunday after church CJ and hisrandma ride the bus across town But today CJ wonders why they don't own a car like his friend. Poor isn t only about pain and suffering but can be about living life to the fullest Beyond that I don t have much to say in support And aren t these two awards supposed to be about books chock full of things to et excited about In the two weeks since the ALA Awards were announced one very special picture book has suddenly found itself showered with accolades and thrust in the center of attention This book which was somewhat overshadowed in the past year received not only a Caldecott Honor but much to the surprise and even shock of many kid lit enthusiasts the highly coveted 2016 Newbery Medal as well The book to cause such a stir is Last Stop on Market Street Written by Matt De La Pena and illustrated by Christian Robinson this book was nationally recognized for its story content along with the illustrations and after a thoughtful read it s not difficult to understand why It is no surprise that this book was acknowledged and hailed for its art Christian Robinson who was once again iven the Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor this year along with the Caldecott Honor has certainly made a name for himself recently in the world of children s literature Robinson s distinctive and expressive art has been celebrated in the award winning books Gaston and Josephine The Dazzling Life of Josephine Baker Here he applies his stylistic illustrations once again to complement and enhance the story of CJ his bus ride across the city and his diverse interactions along the way True to Robinson s approach while the illustrations as a whole are rather simple the attention to detail is incredible Children reading this book will be able to relate to the sheer ordinariness that they themselves experience every day in their own daily routines From the street signage to the handheld devices CJ s world is very obviously the world of today The vibrant colors and appealing textures are also worth pointing out With just a few strokes of his brush Robinson creates a world that is beautiful and very much believable Perhaps what makes this book so special is the fact that the words and the story itself are as high uality as the wonderful art Much like the illustrations the story appears simple at first The Soviet Union glance It takes a second or third reading to truly discover the depth of meaning being conveyed here To begin with the language is magnificent There is an almost musical pulse to the words when spoken aloud In fact some of the lines unexpectedly rhyme and many phrases are incredibly sensory Crumbling sidewalks and broken down doorsraffiti tagged windows and boarded up stores and The outside air smelled like freedom but it also smelled like rain These perfectly chosen words by De La Pena paint pictures in the mind that are as vivid as Robinson s illustrations Upon initially hearing the premise one might be immediately reminded of another Caldecott Honor book After all this story is also about a young boy his nana and their experience in the city And yet that is where the similarities end Last Stop has its own story to tell and it is certainly distinct from what has already been done Here we follow CJ along for the ride as he discovers the simple joys of living the ift of *Giving To Others And *to others and beauty that is found in human interactions The book s title a fitting one
as the majority of the story takes place for the duration of a ride across the city the majority of the story takes place for the duration of a bus ride across the city is not until the last two pages that we actually realize where CJ and his randmother are Science, Technology and Culture going but by then we like CJ have already been reminded about the things in life that are truly important Nana is an incredible character and readers just might find that herentle rebukes to her randson resound with them as well She is obviously not wealthy they don t have a car and CJ points out things that he wishes he could have but she teaches her randson to appreciate ordinary beauty to experience the communal nature of music and to understand the importance of service to others Matt De La Pena says he drew inspiration for this story from his own upbringing You can feel like you ve been slighted if you re rowing up without if you have less money he s commented or you can see the beauty in that And I feel like the most important thing that s ever happened to me is rowing up without money It s one of the things I m the most proud of This backdrop is felt throughout the book and will certainly resonate with kids across the country who find themselves in similar situations to De La Pena and CJ I find the end page of Last Stop to be particularly profound While waiting for the bus to come pick them up and take them back home Nana is knitting CJ is shown reading a book and the rain has definitely stopped Knowing what we now do it is easy to imagine that Nana is making a scarf for a homeless person CJ is reading perhaps aloud to her It is a subtle yet appreciative nod to the critical role that reading played in changing De La Pena s life and is a striking meaningful scene that clinches the overall message of the story Last Stop on Market Street is undeniably beautiful The vibrant art the melodic words and the significant story all come together for an unforgettable experience that takes multiple readings to truly appreciate However the uestion which has been raised since the ALA conference is this does Last Stop deserve the Newbery Medal After all it was a completely unexpected choice and the children s literature community continues to debate why this book should or should not have won the prestigious Medal In the end that is something each reader will have to decide for themselves But consider this the Award is Last Chance Bride given each year to the most distinguished contribution to children s literature Past Newberys have communicated relevant messages showcased different lifestyles and featured strong characters Last Stop on Market Street most certainly does all of these things And while most Newberys need hundreds of pages to accomplish all of this Last Stop does it in 32 Reviewed on my blog. Estion is met with an encouraging answer fromrandma who helps him see the beauty and fun in their routine and the world around th.
Matt de la Pena ☆ 4 charactersPromoting social responsibility I mean these are ALL philosophies with which I happen to most heartily and even very much adamantly AGREE but the lack of displayed subtlety and textual nuances does really bother me a bit as it kind of makes me feel as though I am reading a sermon And is a somewhat preachy sermon on the evils of materialism and that one needs to see beauty everywhere that being socially aware and conscious is a positive truly worth the 2016 Newbery Medal for Last Stop on Market StreetNow with regard to Christian Robinson s accompanying illustrations which also won a 2016 Caldecott Honour designation for Last Stop on Market Street while I do absolutely adore and love the colours used and how the city in both its positives and negatives is Whos Cheatin Who? (Thoroughbred Legacy generally so vibrantly and emotionallylowingly depicted I do find the presented human figures a bit too one dimensional and emotionally stagnant a bit too cartoony for my personal tastes However and that all being said Robinson s pictorial renderings do work very well with Matt de la Pena s narrative both reflecting and at times expanding on the latter s printed words and I can thus much understand how many have found Last Stop on Market Street a successful and wonderful combination of text and images although I for one do personally rather wish that Christian Robinson s illustrations were a trifle less naive and move detailed rounded and expansive in visual scope And sorry I did and do find that white head covering CJ s Lawman Lover (Outlaws, grandmother is wearing a trifle strange and distracting as it almost feels as though it has been added by the illustrator as somewhat of an after thought it just feels a bit artificial and superimposed and if that white headdress is supposed to actually represent therandmother s hair well to my eyes it sure does not really look like hair Nana how come we don t City Girl in Training got a carBoy what do we need a car for Weot a bus that breathes fire and old Mr Dennis who always has a trick for youThis book is about a black little boy and his Mystery at Kittiwake Bay grandmother who live in The CityWHAT I LIKED A children s book with a black MC that isn t all puts on a serious voice This is an important message A boy and hisrandmother spending time together as if this is a normal everyday thing That s sweet You don t Dangerous Waters (Cold Case Files get the idea thatrandma is babysitting instead you The Husband (Smytheshire, Massachusetts, get the idea that she and CJ regularly spend days together The diversity It s the city and you can really tell You meet all kinds of people in these pages Old young tattooed blind in a wheelchair black brown white different body types etcThe illustrations of the tattooed man are pretty impressive Anti materialism and discipline The old woman is tough but loving with herrandson She makes him o to church She makes sure he smiles at the other people on the bus and says Good afternoon to them She looks at the coin in his hand meaningfully so that he ll drop it into the hat of a uitar player CJ asks How come we An Italian Education gotta wait for the bus in all this wet And hisrandma reminds him that trees need water tooYou ve read the opening uote where she explains why they don t need a car it s not a matter of not having it s a matter of not needing He s full of uestions How come that man can t seeBoy what do you know about seeing Nana told himSome people watch the world with their earsThat s a fact Their noses too the man said sniffing *At The AirThat S A Mighty Fine *the airThat s a mighty fine you re wearing today ma amNana sueezed the man s hand and laughed her deep laughWow Grandma is flirting LOLWhat about when CJ sees some teenagers listening to an iPod Sure wish I had one of those he saidNana set down her knittingWhat for You ot the real live thing sitting across from
You She Says Indicating TheShe says indicating the playerOther uestions arise How come it s always so dirty over here CJ uestions when they reach their destination view spoilera soup kitchen hide spoiler A bit to didactic for my taste but it is undeniably a reat tool to encourage many conversations with your child about how diverse people are My son was endlessly fascinated by the Look-Alike Lawman (Texas Twins, guy covered in tattoos Nope This was a definite miss for me I can t believe it won the NewberyI have a feeling that much of this book s premise and intent wouldo right over kids heads Especially when it starts waxing poetic about sunsets and colours and the kid having some sort of eargasm from listening to music on the bus He s little enough to have to hold his Daddy Wanted grandmother s hand the sophistication of his reaction to music probably extends to I liked itI also couldn t stand Nana She s basically a virtue signalling harpy When the kid asks why a blind man can t see sheives him some airy fairy answer about how he sees with his other senses when the kid probably just wanted to know why his eyes didn t work the way his did When the kid says he wishes he had an iPod like the other boys on the bus Nana tells him to impose on the Forbidden Stranger guy holding auitar How does she know the Snowy River Man guy is okay playing in front of strangers Maybe he s just trying toet from Point A to Point B without being harassed by an old woman with a sense of entitlement Sure in this case the Night Moves (Harlequin Blaze guy starts playing voluntarily but then Nanaives the kid a look and he feels he has to Les brumes d'avalon : roman give away the coin the bus driverave him I bet Nana s the sort of person who ll throw him a birthday party and then make him donate all his presents to charityMaybe I m too cynical for this Or maybe I just don t like books that try way too hard to look like they re promoting virtuous behaviourOh and the illustrations are also terrible So there s that It no longer surprises me when I am not excited and the illustrations are also terrible So there s that It no longer surprises me when I am not excited the books that receive the prestigious Newbery and Caldecott Awards I am not excited by Last Stop on Market Street the 2016 Newbery Winner and Caldecott Honor book as well The illustrations are interesting but I found them predictable The storyline is sweet and with a Malakai (Wicked Games, great message you don t have to be rich with money to be rich in other ways We can use titles that show how being. Colby Why doesn’t he have an iPod like the boys on the bus How come they always have toet off in the dirty part of town Each ,