Saturday, June 7, 2008

Piano Starts Here: The Young Art Tatum by Robert Andrew Parker

This lovely illustrated biography tells of the young life of Jazz pianist, Art Tatum. Told in first person, with just a touch of fictionalization, illustrator/author Robert Parker charms the senses with mood-capturing watercolor illustrations and brief but beautiful text. When describing Art's love of the piano, the author writes, "When I am at the piano, I close my eyes. I play clouds of notes, rivers of notes, notes that sound like skylarks singing and leaves rustling, like rain on a rooftop. I forget that my eyes aren't good. I have everything I need." A well-thought out end note tops off the story with more detailed information about Tatum's life. Absolutely captivating!

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