Reviews for Stable

Booklist Reviews 2010 October #2
This large-format picture book opens outside a Brooklyn stable in the late 1800s, when horses pulled carriages, trolleys, and fire engines as well as wagons carrying milk, ice, and produce through city streets. Fast-forward to today's Brooklyn, where the old Kensington stable still stands. Sepia-toned paintings depicting bygone days give way to the sun-dappled watercolors illustrating the modern stable at work, its horses used for trail rides, lessons, and pulling carriages. This unusual offering gives a vivid sense of the passage of time. Even the present-day paintings seem to capture the essence of a particular moment before it slips away, and the book raises the question of how long the stable will remain. Beautiful in their use of light and shadow, Lewin's paintings mesh well with the simply written tex. Great for horse fans, from the appealing jacket art to the final pages giving the names and "head shot" portraits of dozens of horses and ponies. Copyright 2010 Booklist Reviews.

Horn Book Guide Reviews 2011 Spring
Using firmly drafted paintings with saturated colors and muted edges, Lewin pictures first the historical roots and then the present-day incarnation of a riding stable in Brooklyn. In natural and unobtrusive narration, he describes the equine and human characters inhabiting the stable and the special circumstances of city-dwelling horses. A final question looks to the future of this community landmark. Copyright 2010 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

Kirkus Reviews 2010 September #2
As he did in his acclaimed At Gleason's Gym (2007), Lewin conveys the spirit of a Brooklyn institution through sumptuously detailed, luminous watercolors. Kensington Stables, a relic from the days when horses provided necessary transportation, shelters 37 animals, large and small, with names like Lumpy, Marzipan and True. Tiny Chip gives pony rides at elementary schools; workhorse Fergus pulls the wedding carriage. A therapeutic riding program serves special-needs children every afternoon. The straightforward, present-tense prose conveys the central point that the horses are important to the community, and they should be preserved even as condos surround the little stable. A sequence of sepia-toned spreads sets up the modern, full-color tale, effectively illustrating the "time in America when horses did just about everything," from taking people to the beach to pulling fire engines. His paintings--of the shadowed stables, the children, the farrier and every individual horse--are so real readers will fairly smell the warm fug rising from the horses' backs and hear their hoofbeats clopping down the city streets. Beautiful. (author's note) (Picture book. 4-8) Copyright Kirkus 2010 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

Publishers Weekly Reviews 2010 October #2

As he did in At Gleason's Gym, Lewin pays affectionate tribute to a Brooklyn landmark, this one a home for horses. After an opening spread depicts the stable more than a century ago, when "horses did just about everything," sepia-toned watercolors portray the animals pulling trolleys and other vehicles, even taking passengers to the beach. This period- flavored art gives way to crisp, four-color paintings as the narrative shifts to the present and the horses that live in Kensington Stables, "a living, breathing relic of a bygone era." Lewin's chatty prose summons the sounds and the sights of the stable, while underscoring its timelessness ("hooves clip clop on the pavement as they did a hundred years ago"). Yet its future is apparently in jeopardy--Lewin concludes with the image of neighboring high-rise buildings under construction, towering over the stable: "What will become of these horses and the people who love them if the wrecker's ball finally comes?" It's an ominous, elegiac ending that's likely to prompt questions, yet no other details or information about threats to the stable are offered. Ages 5-9. (Oct.)

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School Library Journal Reviews 2010 October

K-Gr 3--This picture book briefly introduces readers to the history of horse transportation in urban areas and then describes the current activities of Kensington Stables, in Brooklyn, NY. Small children take their first pony rides there, older children cross the street on horseback to take riding lessons in the nearby park, those with special needs participate in a therapeutic riding program, and wedding parties hire carriages for their special day. Lewin also introduces the stable staff (the owner, riding instructor, and farrier), as well as the horses themselves. The narrative ends on a mournful note, questioning how long the stable will remain amid ongoing development in the neighborhood. The author relates the Kensington story in a spare, straightforward style that readers will find approachable. Realistic watercolor illustrations--first in sepia tones for historical times and then in color for the present day--show the operations of the stable with warmth and energy. A final yearbook-style montage depicts each horse. Though this book will be of special interest in Brooklyn and the surrounding areas, it has broader appeal. Suggest it for history or transportation units, horse-crazy readers, and families looking for a gentle introduction to nonfiction.--Jayne Damron, Farmington Community Library, MI

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