An Examination of Children's Books and Picture Books
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Picture Book Review-Faith Ringgold-Tar Beach

This picture book is done in a style reminiscent of Gauguin and folk art traditions, with flat near perspectives thickly painted illustrations. The book itself describes a dream and a life more perhaps then a story, it is a common and important dream for people to have, for will the protagonist of the story sits on the tar coated roof she imagines that she can fly. Though visually depicted as actual flight the story itself is using flight as a metaphor for success, for rising socially. The lack of perspective allows the viewers in one picture to take in the whole of the roof and the city surrounding it at the same time, which is important as the description of the city is a major factor in the story. The girl talks about how her father worked on a bridge, and how he is helping to build a Union building. Despite his helping to build the Union building however her father is not allowed to join the Union, because her Grandfather, his father was not a member.

            So she says that she is going to fly over the building and give it to her daddy, for in her dream flying over a building allows her to own it. But this dream is not all serious, for she wishes to fly over an ice cream factory in order to insure that she can have ice cream for desert. The picture books style is rough and flat, beautiful for the urban environment it features.