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Ballerina!

by Peter Sis

Published by Greenwillow Books / HarperCollins, 2001
24 pages
ISBN: 0-688-17944-4

Ages 3 - 7

Peter Sís's picture books for young children are often rooted firmly in the imaginings of a child–the author/artists clearly understands the seamless relationship between fantasy and reality for the young. Ballerina is no exception, but readers of this appealing book are likely to stretch their muscles as well as their minds. On the first page they meet Terry, a young girl who loves ballet. A black-and-white line drawing pictures Terry in her bedroom, where a large empty mirror hangs on the wall. On each successive page, Terry uses a different outfit or prop to launch herself–body and mind–into the world of dance. "She puts on her red leotard and dances a fire dance" is the text on one page featuring the simple line-drawing of Terry leaping in her leotard.. On the facing page, the once-empty mirror now shows an image of how Terry sees herself–a flamboyant, grown-up dancer in a fiery red outfit soaring over flames. Terry imagines herself dancing the Nutcracker and Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella and Swan Lake, a tiger dance and a spring dance, in a book that mirrors the behavior of many young children, encouraging both bodies and spirits to soar. CCBC categories: Picture Books for Younger Children; Books for Babies and Toddlers; The Arts.  © Cooperative Children's Book Center


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