Cover image for Lucy
Title:
Lucy
ISBN:
9780763668082
Edition:
First edition.
Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : illustrations ; 24 cm
Summary:
Lucy is a small dog without a home. She had one once, but she remembers it only in her dreams. Eleanor is a little girl who looks forward to feeding the stray dog that appears faithfully beneath her window each day. Eleanor's father is a juggler with stage fright. The overlapping stories of three delightful characters, offering a slightly different perspective each time, come together in a truly original, beautifully illustrated book for dog (and underdog) lovers of all ages.
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Summary

Summary

A tiny dog, a kindhearted girl, and a nervous juggler converge in a cinematic book in four acts - a unique children's literature experience.Lucy is a small dog without a home. She had one once, but she remembers it only in her dreams. Eleanor is a little girl who looks forward to feeding the stray dog that appears faithfully beneath her window each day. Eleanor's father is a juggler with stage fright. The overlapping stories of three delightful characters, offering a slightly different perspective each time, come together in a truly original, beautifully illustrated book for dog (and underdog) lovers of all ages.


Author Notes

Randy Cecil has illustrated more than twenty books for children, including Brontorina by James Howe, And Here's to You! by David Elliott, and Lovabye Dragon by Barbara Joosse. He is also the author-illustrator of Duck and Gator . Randy Cecil lives in Houston.


Reviews 5

Publisher's Weekly Review

In Cecil's (Evermore Dragon) town of Bloomville, people flock to vaudeville shows, apartment buildings have stoops, and the neighborhood butcher sports a handlebar moustache. Set over four acts, the story-which could either be considered a very long picture book or a large-format chapter book-follows the lives of three city inhabitants. There's Lucy, a small stray dog who romps through Bloomville, always on the lookout for food: "She takes a big sniff. These are questionable scraps. Very questionable. She eats them anyway." Sam, a grocery clerk, is a gifted juggler with stage fright. Eleanor, Sam's daughter, slips Lucy tidbits when she can. Cozy, repeated sequences, like Lucy's daily morning dash through the city, "Past Bertolt's Butcher Shop.... Past the diner with the questionable scraps," counterbalance the story's mysteries: How did Lucy lose the luxurious home she often remembers? Why is Sam so terrified? Cecil's stylized black-and-white oil paintings are framed in circles, focusing each scene as if through a lens. The conclusion unfolds naturally, while Cecil's understated writing and careful pacing contribute substantially to this sweetly satisfying story. Ages 5-8. (Aug.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.


Horn Book Review

In the fictional, old-fashioned metropolis of Bloomville, store-clerk-by-day Sam moonlights as a (stage frightsuffering) juggler. His daughter Eleanor lavishes attention on the neighborhood dogs, including a stray named Lucy. When Lucy -- who is often in survival mode -- catches moments of respite, she dreams of her happy-home former life. The story builds in four acts, with slight intentional repetition (The next morning, as the sun rose over Bloomville) but with new events and information thrown in, much like additional juggling balls being tossed into the air. By the time readers learn Lucys backstory, she has found in Eleanor and Sam her forever family, and Sam has finally found his stage frightfree place in the spotlight. Cecils oval-shaped, duotone illustrations (rendered in oil) float amidst white space, the design offering equal weight to both text and image. Illustrations accompany as well as enhance plot: when Eleanor wonders, And where is Lucy now? readers see the pup in the background, sleeping peacefully on the barbershop stoop. Like extras in a stage play, Bloomville residents go about their bustling lives in the background, and have their own stories, too, including two park-goers of a certain age looking for companionship, and a band of street musicians that grows in size daily. elisa gall (c) Copyright 2016. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Booklist Review

Each morning, a small stray dog emerges from the alley where she sleeps and quickly scampers across town for breakfast. And each morning, from a second-story window, Eleanor lowers a bit of sausage on a string for the dog who always visits, just as her father begins his daily juggling practice in the living room. But evenings bring loneliness for the dog, who cannot remember her lost family, and paralyzing stage fright for Eleanor's father, booed off the stage yet again. Told in four acts, the days begin the same but small variations nudge these characters closer together until fate intervenes. The gentle tone and whimsical prose are enticing, and the message is unmistakable: homes and families can and should be made. The softly textured black-and-white paintings radiate quietness, and everyone goes about their day with a solitary kindness that resonates throughout the story. The circular shape of the illustrations mimic a telescopic view, creating focused, intimate doorways into the story. Beautifully subtle in execution, this one begs for multiple readings.--Hayes, Summer Copyright 2016 Booklist


School Library Journal Review

PreS-Gr 2-As the sun comes up in the town of Bloomville, a small dog awakens from her alley crate; a young girl hugs her father as he leaves the house, but first puts a sausage in her pocket; and the girl's father places juggling balls in his pocket as he makes his way to an unsatisfying job. How these three lives intersect is told in three acts brought to life in rounded, textured, monochromatic images placed on white pages. The composition of each page enhances the illusion of theater, focusing readers' eyes on the action, which takes place center stage (actually, center page). The homeless dog comes to be named Lucy and is befriended and adopted by the girl, Eleanor. Lucy goes on to accidentally help the girl's father gain confidence as a juggler and begin a new chapter. The action, and even a bit of each character's backstory, unfolds in a visual narrative that is accompanied by engaging though brief text. VERDICT This quiet, satisfying tale with its old-fashioned setting is sure to enthrall readers of many ages as they reexamine the detailed illustrations. Best for one-on-one and small group sharing.-Maria B. Salvadore, formerly at District of Columbia Public Library © Copyright 2016. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Kirkus Review

Defying simple categorization, Cecil's 144-page illustrated narrative presents a street dog that dreams of home, a light-skinned girl who longs for companionship, and her father, a juggler who panics in front of an audience.Rendered in oil and printed in softly textured black and gray duotones on white paper, the scenes unfold in circular compositions (suggesting spotlights), accompanied by several sentences per page. Act I and II follow a similar pattern: noisy cars awaken Lucy, and she trots along the pavement to an apartment building's entrance. Eleanor lowers a piece of sausage on a string from a second-floor window. The juggler's exceptional skill is showcased when no one is looking, but he is yanked offstage each disastrous night. It is when the sensitive girl attempts to bolster her father's confidence that changes occur. Each character's daytime decisions lead to new outcomes after their paths intersect for a show-stopping evening performance during a climactic third act. Quirky caricatures featuring lopsided eyes and flat heads interpret the drama in the streets and interiors of a diverse community in an undetermined urban yesteryear. Children ready to move beyond early readers will appreciate the pace of the page turns and the chance to discover visual details that characters miss.A brief denouement in the final act reveals that each main character has given the others just what they needed; a clever structure and a satisfying story. (Picture book. 6-9) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.