Wednesday, August 8, 2012

At the Boardwalk - a review

I could not let the summer get away without featuring this one!

A preview available at the publisher's site
Fineman, Kelly Ramsdell. 2012. At the Boardwalk. Illustrated by Mónica Armiño. Wilton, CT: Tiger Tales.

With a rhyming, smooth-flowing pattern in which the 2nd and 6th lines repeat, Fineman catches the very essence of summer boardwalk activity along the Eastern seaboard.

At the boardwalk
day or night
Treats for every appetite
Popcorn - taffy - fudge, delight
At the boardwalk
day or night
Food, rides, arcades, and fireworks; in rain and fog and sun - she captures it all - right down to the oompah music of the carousel and the stands selling hermit crabs.  Each 6-line verse appears on a two-page spread in which Spanish illustrator, Mónica Armiño, uses pencils and mixed media on textured paper to create a light-hearted, multicultural tableau of the best the boardwalk has to offer.   The final image is that of a lone worker sweeping the sand from an empty boardwalk that stretches away into the distance toward a darkened Ferris wheel.  To the East, the ocean is calm.  The sky is darkening and a full moon is high in the sky.

Oh, would that summer would never end!

I love this one!

In checking, I find that, of course, Kelly Ramsdell Fineman is from New Jersey. I'd be willing to bet that she's been to my stretch of paradise.  (I'd love to know how an artist from Madrid got it so right.)

We'd like to keep it a secret, but this is the real Jersey Shore.


  1. This IS a great book. We recently finished our summer school program and the theme was NJ. We read this book, and were surprised to hear that many of our students had never been to "the boardwalk"! The illustrations were great!

  2. This would be good for teaching mood or setting. Summer is running quickly by. Thank you for sharing.