- Drum City written by Thea Guidone, illustrated by Vanessa Newton
- Reading level: Ages 4 and up
- Hardcover: 32 pages
- Publisher: Tricycle Press (June 8, 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-13: 978-1582463087
Back-of-the-book blurb: A summer parade, a drummer parade, a magical bucket-and-bowl serenade!
What begins with one boy’s beat on a kettle soon spreads to pots and pans and cartons and cans all across the neighborhood. When everyone joins in, together they create the catchy, driving tempo of a bright, hot DRUM CITY!
Get ready to make some noise!
She Is Too Fond of Books’ thoughts: Get ready to make some noise, indeed! Thea Guidone’s rhythmic writing shows that anyone can start a movement (literally), and that music – and our happy response when we “feel the beat” – is contagious.
My youngest child, 7-year-old The Little Guy, is very busy. He’s always moving, fidgeting, exploring, and doing whatever he can to satisfy his curiosity about the world around him (often this involves somewhat risky – not well thought out – behaviors).
But when he picks up on the rhythm he hears in music, he slows down and focuses. “Music has charms to soothe the savage beast.”
Books with rhyme and rhythm get his attention, and Drum City is at the top of the list. It’s a more involved rhythm, a cadence that feels like a song in itself.
The young boy who opens the book by drumming on a pot with some kitchen tools soon gathers a crowd of other children who:
Bowls and buckets,
cartons and cans,
barrels and bins,
and pots and pans,
mops on pails,
and rusty old rails -
a frolicking, rollicking
ruckus of rumbling
They march through the streets of the city, attracting others (children and adults), who drop what they’re doing to pick up whatever is at hand and create a spontaneous percussion marching band.
We absolutely love the rhythm, rhyme, and sense of empowerment in Drum City.
Vanessa Newton’s illustrations are bright, detailing a city which may be New York, but isn’t named. I especially enjoy the facial expressions – children are joyous, adults are confused/curious, and a bit slower to join in – but they do!
Mel and Jen snuggle with "Pig" from "If You Give a Pig a Pancake" at the Family Trees exhibit at the Concord Museum
I was reminded of Drum City
last weekend when I attended the Family Trees display at the Concord Museum
. If you’re within driving distance of Concord, I strongly encourage you to visit the exhibit before it closes on January 1. This is the 16th annual “Celebration of Children’s Literature” with trees decorated with themes drawn from books both old and new. In addition to featuring Drum City
this year, other books include The Snow Queen, Pippi Longstocking
, Ladybug Girl, If You Give a Pig a Pancake
, and Grandpa Green