"Books to the ceiling,
Books to the sky,
My pile of books is a mile high.
How I love them! How I need them!
I'll have a long beard by the time I read them."
- Arnold Lobel

ABOUT

Every Tuesday is Book Review Day, where I review and recommend a children's book.

Every Wednesday is Wise Owl Wednesday, where you can butter up your brain with some children's literature facts - history, milestones, trivia ... stop by here to learn a little something about the amazing world of books for the young!

Every Thursday is Literacy Tip Day, where I offer literacy suggestions for your children based upon my teaching and parenting experience.



Keep cozy this fall with a good book!

16 September 2010

BBAW :: Forgotten Treasure

From the BBAW site: “Sure we’ve all read about Freedom and Mockingjay but we likely have a book we wish would get more attention by book bloggers, whether it’s a forgotten classic or under marketed contemporary fiction. This is your chance to tell the community why they should consider reading this book!”


And my choice is ...

Chasing Vermeer

Chasing Vermeer
Written by Blue Balliett
Illustrated by Brett Helquist
Copyright 2004
Published by Scholastic Inc.

Publisher's Summary:  On a warm October night in Chicago, three deliveries were made in the same neighborhood.  A plump tangerine moon had just risen over Lake Michigan.  The doorbell had been rung at each place, and an envelope left propped outside ... The same letter went out to all three:

Dear Friend:
I would like your help in identifying a crime that is now centuries old.  This crime has wronged one of the world's greatest painters.  As those in positions of authority are not brave enough to correct this error, I have taken it upon myself to reveal the truth.  I have chosen you because of your discriminating eye, your intelligence, and your ability to think outside of convention. ... Although you may never meet, the three of you will work together in ways none of us can predict.
If you show this to the authorities, you will most certainly be placing your life in danger...

The letter was not signed, and it had no return address.

Mary Elizabeth's Musings:  How can that summary possibly make a single, living soul pass up the opportunity to read this book??? Doesn't that letter make you ready to read this book cover to cover in one sitting??
Well, when I first picked up Chasing Vermeer as a fifth-grade teacher several years ago, I was completely spellbound! Filled with mystery, suspense, art history, mathematics, and the great city of Chicago as its setting, I would have to say that this book did not receive the type of recognition I felt it deserved. 
Ms. Balliett's literary style flows as beautifully as the story line.  She takes a seemingly complicated plot along with enormous character development, and successfully weaves it into a unique and extremely satisfying reading experience.

Chasing Vermeer was the first book in a series of amazing art mysteries! As you might have guessed, I highly recommend the other two books that have followed:

Wright 3The Calder Game

Have you read one or more books in this series? Did you enjoy them as much as I did?

1 comment:

Brimful Curiosities said...

I've read The Wright 3 a few years ago and loved everything about it. The Frank Lloyd Wright connection originally attracted me to the book, but I really enjoyed the codes and the use of the Pentominoes. I had to buy my own set after reading the book.

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