Thursday, January 18, 2007

Gollywhopper Games Book Jacket

I just got a recent book jacket sketch approved. And here it is. It is another book for Greenwillow. It is a fun, adventurous story that has a Willy Wonka feel to it. A bunch of kids compete in a game/contest inside a giant, fantasy filled toy store.
I put a lot of time into the color sketch because I wanted a pretty detailed road map for the final painting. I should be able to post the final in a couple weeks.
In the meantime, I am putting the final tweaks on another exciting book jacket for a book called Alex and the Ironic Gentleman.

On a lighter note, my 9 month old daughter saw her first snowfall today. The wonder in her eyes made my day. Time to starting waxing the sled!

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Review from School Library Journal

Here is a recent review that will be in the February issue of School Library Journal.
Hyperion Reviews in School Library Journal, February, 2007
ROCCO, John. Wolf! Wolf! illus. by author. unpaged. Hyperion. Mar. 2007. RTE $15.99. ISBN 1-4231-0012-3. LC number unavailable.

K-Gr 3–This twisted treatment of Aesop’s fable flips everything readers know about the boy who cried wolf on its head and ends up where they never would have expected. From the brushstrokes of the hand-lettered title to the pink cherry blossoms featured with the wolf and the boy on the cover, ancient China unfolds as the stage and setting for this story. In this variant, children get a little insight into the wolf’s point of view: When the boy cries “WOLF! WOLF!” the slightly deaf animal believes he is being summoned. He feels tricked by the youngster when the angry villagers arrive looking for a menacing creature. The poor animal is only looking for a tasty meal, possibly one of the boy’s goats since his garden has fallen into disarray. In the end, the boy gives the old wolf a goat; instead of making him a one-time-only meal, the wolf puts him to work in his garden, and the two become friends. The wolf is a fully anthropomorphized character, complete with red silk jacket and shade umbrella. The purposeful use of frames, unusual setting, and visual humor makes this an excellent addition to any collection and a particularly interesting launching point for many discussions and investigations into fractured tales.–Genevieve Gallagher, Murray Elementary School, Charlottesville, VA