something quite magical about listening to and playing acoustic music,
especially when stringed instruments are involved. It’s kind of pure and
uplifting. Resonant. Moving, even!
Cello is a
children’s book with a special and wonderful added bonus in the form of a
musical score. From the outset I was hooked, poring over the intricate
illustrations and wondering about the families who lived in the welcoming pair
of apartments that span the first double-page spread.
One balcony is decorated
with pot plants, a couch, open doors, fairy lights festooned around the windows
and a rush of sunlight. The other is more austere and ordered but still with a
very enticing exterior, complete with cat.The story
involves two children who live side by side in city apartments but have never
met. Their homes are different in terms of culture, décor, food and lifestyle –
but in one important way, they are the same. They are both home to children who
Cello shows how
these mystery friends become musical friends, through their shared love of
playing music. They learn individually, and through the story their curiosity
and friendship grows which allows them to play and perform together.
As a parent
whose children were deliberately schooled in stringed instruments from a young
age (because they resonate deeply through their bodies and minds as they are
played), I’m a pushover for any creative works that encourage community
mindedness and music making. Especially when accompanied by such beautiful,
eloquent music as this book is.
story which is adorned with gorgeous, detailed illustrations and set against
the backdrop of a stunning musical accompaniment which can be listened to on
the EK books website. This package with book and printed music represents an
innovative, expansive and perhaps even bold vision, leading us happily into the
wider world of creative arts.
Such a gift.
Title: Violin & Cello
Author: Catherine Greer
Illustrator: Joanna Bartell
Music: Alexander Lau
Publisher: EK Books, $24.99
Publication Date: September 2022
For ages: 4 – 8
Type: Picture Book