Roar-chestra!: A Wild Story of Musical Words – Robert Heidbreder, illustrated by Dušan Petričič

Roar-chestra!: A Wild Story of Musical Words – Robert Heidbreder, illustrated by Dušan Petričič. Kids Can Press, (9781525302749), 2021

Format:  Hardcover

Rating: 1- 5 (5 is excellent or a Starred review) 4

Genre:  Picture Book

What did you like about the book?   A conductor and a menagerie of animals illustrate musical terms.  The conductor appears on a double page spread with the term displayed on a musical staff.  The conductor’s hand and baton motions are illustrated with a variety of lines in motion.  A turn of the page brings a burst of color as a variety of animals illustrate the term.  For instance, Allegro is illustrated by the text “Quickly, swiftly – race, run, fly!” as the animals fill the page with motion in all directions.  Dolce is “Sweetly twirl, swirl, dance, whirl” with animals playing, rolling and hugging. Other terms included are adagio, glissando, staccato, fortissimo and pianissimo.  The final page includes a glossary of the Italian terms and their meanings in English.  The illustrations, rendered in pen and ink and colored in Photoshop, pair perfectly with the text for a lovely orchestral experience.

Anything you didn’t like about it? No

To whom would you recommend this book?  This is a must for every music teacher and young readers interested in music and orchestras.  Pair it with The Philharmonic Gets Dressed by Karla Kuskin, Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin by Lloyd Moss and Meet the Orchestra by Anne Hayes for a musical story time.

Who should buy this book?  Public Libraries and elementary school libraries

Where would you shelve it? Picture Books

Should we (librarians/readers) put this at the top of our “to read” piles?  No

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City:  Catherine Coyne, Mansfield Public Library, Mansfield, MA

Date of review:  4/29/2021         

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