THE FRIENDLY FOUR
Celebrate summer with Coretta Scott King Award winners Eloise Greenfield and Jan Spivey Gilchrist
Drum: Didn't I call this summer a bummer?
All: Not anymore, not anymore.
Drum: I was alone, and life was lonely.
All: But not anymore,
Drum: 'cause we're the Friendly Four
When Drum, Dorene, Louis, and Rae enter one another's lives unexpectedly, they embark on an unforgettable summer of discovery and creative play together. With individual poems and poems for multiple voices, Eloise Greenfield follows four children as they explore the bonds of friendship, family, and community.
Four new friends turn a dull summer around with creative projects and energetic play. Greenfield's form gets attention right away; the narrative unfolds via 34 free-verse poems in six parts, beginning with "One. Drummond." Drum introduces himself and describes his boredom, perking up when a new family moves in down the street. Drum and the new kid, Doreen, play a series of games. Their bright verses (and many that follow) could also be viewed as short scenes, suitable for classroom use. Louis comes next, then Rae. Each voice has its own color-red, green, blue and purple-as they talk to each other and plan. The quartet is crackling with ideas, like a makeshift town made out of cardboard and paint in Drum's back yard. They act out various scenarios in their town's many establishments. Gilchrist's watercolor illustrations work in harmony with the text, in a variety of configurations vis-a-vis the verse. All that can end this summer idyll is the start of a new school year. A lively tribute to children's imagination as well as an inviting introduction to free verse. (Picture book. 5-9) (Kirkus Reviews)
For Ages: 7 - 8 years old
For Grades: 2 - 3
Number Of Pages: 48
Published: 1st June 2006
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers Inc
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 28.7 x 22.4
Weight (kg): 0.47