of the Center for Children's Books
|The Bulletin Dozen is a monthly theme-based list of titles available only on-line.
Since we're awfully fond of bakers here at the Bulletin, we thought we'd adopt
their philosophy of generosity and throw in an extra one or two when we have them to
offer--so don't expect an even dozen. Please feel free to copy, download, or link to these
lists. We ask only that you cite the source. See the archive for lists from previous months.
With media shots of collapsing towers and smoking rubble seared into our minds, we now search for ways to temper the impact and offer positive and, hopefully, healing images to our children. Here are a dozen small celebrations testifying that the human impetus to build is at least as compelling as the proclivity to destroy.
--Elizabeth Bush, reviewer
Older readers (and probably a few adults, too) who delight in how-did-they-do-that? documentaries will revel in these cogent essays on the manpower and material mustered in the execution of seven structures--from Imhotep's pyramid to the Thames Tunnel--each an innovative marvel in its time. (BCCB 4/00)
Although the Bard's the obvious draw for this title, there's equal fascination in the iterations of the playhouse itself, its destruction, its excavation, and its twentieth century resurrection under the guidance of Sam Wanamaker and architect Theo Crosby. (BCCB 4/99)
Who isn't fascinated by the somber, towering moai figures that ring the famed island? Arnold discusses some recent research into Rapanui culture and speculates why and how islanders may have carved, moved, and finally toppled the statues. (BCCB 4/00)
While most of the city sleeps, Alex accompanies his engineer father to the busy downtown worksite to bask in the sights and sounds of a typical workday (well, actually worknight) for Dad. The midnight setting of deep sapphire sky pierced by the headlights of heavy machinery will leave bedbound viewers envious of Alex's field trip. (BCCB 7/00)
It's hard to imagine that a few skinny, snaky lines and some offhand-ish paint daubs, arranged with precision and delicacy in an expanse of white space, could so ably convey the dust, sweat, and muscle of a construction site. Cooper carries it off with panache. (BCCB 4/99)
Beneath the regal lady's oxidized copper skin is the "curtain wall" skeleton that keeps her standing proud. Here Curlee examines, in stunning paintings and kid-friendly diagrams, the techniques of her construction and the ongoing conservation and repair required to keep her looking her best. (BCCB 5/00)
Vivid photos of playful and provocative designs of this world class architect glamorously command center stage, while the text addresses the acclaim and controversy that mark his career. (BCCB 10/00)
Although the photo reproductions aren't always quite up to Hoban's exacting standards, this wordless photo collection is perfect for sharing between adults and children who love to Ooh! and Aah! over massive earthmoving equipment. (BCCB 4/97)
In this wordless classic, a resourceful little wooden couple use colored blocks to build their home, salvage their home, move their home, rebuild their home, and likely live happily ever after. Don't overlook the animated video, with its staccato minimalist score, available through Weston Woods. (BCCB 6/71)
In this exceptionally handsome volume Isaacson shares insights on buildings of particular beauty and significance around the world. Simply a grand tour for browsers and architecture devotees alike. (BCCB 11/88)
How can anyone reasonably be expected to narrow Macaulay's canon down to a "best" book? Pick out your personal favorites for a book display or patron bibliography, but consider including not only the award winners (e.g., Castle), but also a less celebrated entry like Mill, that touches on engineering, economic development, and urban planning as well as architecture.
In an insightful and often humorous text, Rubin discusses some famous buildings that were born in tempest of criticism but survived to become icons-beloved or, at the very least, regarded with a large measure of pride. (BCCB 9/01)
This title has it all--bridges going up, tunnels going down--as Vanderwarker adroitly explicates Boston's massive solution (now underway) to massive traffic problems. Children who dream of turning their childhood blocks and sandbox skills into a productive career can fill their heads with awesome possibilities for the future. (BCCB review forthcoming)
[Back to the Bulletin Homepage]
This page was last updated on October 1, 2001.