Stinson, Kathy. The Man with the Violin. Illustrated by Dušan Petričić. Book Review.

The Man With the Violin

This gentle book is a joy to share with a child. This told from the point of view of Dylan, a little boy who notices things. As his mother hurries him through the subway, Dylan pauses to hear a musician playing a violin. The author, Kathy Stinson, explains beautifully how the music affects the child. The illustrator, Dušan Petričić, uses color and black-and-white illustration to vividly illustrate this charming book.

Dylan’s mother, like most people in the city, does not stop to listen. What makes this book so interesting is that it is based on a true event. Joshua Bell, one of the best violinists in the world, took his priceless Stradivarius violin to a Washington station and played for passerbys. The adults hurried past while many children strained to listen.

In the back of the book, the event is explained in detail. It will give most adults pause to realize that they may have lost the curiosity and appreciation that children have for music. While this book will open interesting dialogue between an adult and child aged 6 to 10, even younger children will enjoy it. The first time I tried to read it to my 2 1/2-year-old granddaughter, she lost interest. I tried again a few days later, and she listened to the very end. The next day she requested book.

It added to her enjoyment when I played (on CD) some of the music Joshua Bell might have played.


Bonnie Ferrante: Books For All Ages

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