Last Stop On Market Street
With such a short text, I think most people expect gorgeous lyricism from the prose, and while I think that might be an unrealistic expectation for any picture book, I definitely think this one has a nice rhythm and cadence that lends itself to reading aloud. I also notice several instances of metaphor, simile, alliteration, and personification that enhance the text. The more I read this one, the more the style of the prose grows on me. I haven’t read it with children yet, like Rachel did, but would welcome the additional feedback from those who have.
While the plot is fairly straightforward, it does obfuscate the final destination. The main characters, CJ and his nana, are drawn very nicely for such a brief text. But while plot and character are solid, theme is really the area where I think this book shines the brightest. Nana is such a wonderful character–“[CJ] wondered how his nana always found beautiful where he never even thought to look”–and she is the pulsing heart of this book, thematically. She’s the real deal.
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About Jonathan Hunt
Jonathan Hunt is the Coordinator of Library Media Services at the San Diego County Office of Education. He served on the 2006 Newbery committee, and has also judged the Caldecott Medal, the Printz Award, the Boston Globe-Horn Book Awards, and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org
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