Town Is by the Sea Reviews

UPDATE TIME: 2017-07-24 
Review Score: 4 out of 5 star From 0 user ratings

" Many question if there is a place for "quiet" books in current publishing. This book firmly and quietly demonstrates the value and unique effectiveness of a quiet book to share particular stories. The rhythmic repetition, cycles of time, wide-format perspective of the expansive sea, and the subtly dramatic contrast between the water's surface and the mines under the sea combine to produce a living, breathing story. " said.

" A young boy, whose father "works under the sea, deep down in the coal mines," describes daily life in his small coastal town. The narrator's conclusion--"I think about the sea, and I think about my father. I think about the bright days of summer and the dark tunnels underground. One day it will be my turn. I'm a miner's son. In my town, that's the way it goes."--makes this a quietly moving summertime story and an excellent conversation starter. " said.

" Although there are many picture books I love, I can't own them all, but this is one that I had to own. It's simply wonderful, as many have already shared. I will not tell too much of this story, want you to experience it yourself if you haven’t already. It, with the illustrations, is one to savor again and again. It’s historical, it’s loving, and while it holds great tension, it ends just right. " said.

" READ THIS BOOK! While it is a quiet picture book for kids, children may not get the deeper feelings that adults will from reading it, but it should generate conversation with older children. The legacy of a coal mining town in the 1950s is explored here with minimal text and haunting illustrations. This book will stay with me for quite awhile. Text and illustrations are a perfect combination...they each propel the story forward. " said.

" "From my house I can see the sea..." is how this lovely book begins. Each page is so beautifully illustrated and crafted so as to evoke all the senses and put you inside the places. The boy comes from a family of coal miners and the image of digging underground is contrasted with living out by the sea. You smell the salty air, hear the waves crash and feel like you too are under the earth digging coal. " said.

" I thought the illustrations were goregous and the story itself was very lyrical, but I didn't think that this story necessarily matched the author's note at the end of the book. I didn't feel that this story quite captured the danger of working in the mines and I don't think it was very clear that it was set in 1950. Overall, I enjoyed the illustrations and the story, but I found the nuances of it, hard to place. " said.

"This is such a beautifully written and illustrated book. The contrast between the town by the sea and the coal miners working below the sea brings such an interesting perspective to the book. I love that it is set in Cape Breton (my husband and I had our honeymoon there). Sydney Smith paints stunning ocean scenes, and it makes me feel like I am right there, standing on the shore, looking out at the sea. My two daughters, ages 7 and 9, loved the story and the repetitive phrases. They were also wowed by the illustrations. " said.

"A boy tells the story of his very ordinary day by the seaside while his father works underground digging coal. This somber story is supported by muted illustrations that set the mood for a sunny summer day by the ocean in stark contrast to the backbreaking work going on under the sea. Town is by the Sea by Joanne Schwartz is a book to read again and again with children 4 - 10 to explore the lovely illustrations and how they tell the story and support the text. This might make a great book to introduce a classroom unit on natural resources. " said.

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