Emma and Julia Love Ballet
Written and illustrated by Barbara McClintock
Scholastic Press, 2016, Ages 4-8
This book looks at the lives of a young girl and an young adult girl. They are very similar with their love of ballet. They both have similar daily routines as well. They wake up early, eat breakfast, get ready for ballet lessons, get prepared for practice, stretch and warm up at practice, and love their dance instructors. The only difference is that Emma is a young dancer with aspirations of dancing on stage, and Julia dances on stage as a professional dancer. At the end of the story, Emma ends up getting to watch Julia dance at a show. There she gets to meet Julia and get her autograph.
In this book, the author’s writing style is rather simple. During most of the book, the author compares the two main characters in the simplest of ways. She uses the words “too” a lot to emphasize the similarities between Emma and Julia. The author also uses a lot of action verbs throughout this book to demonstrate Emma and Julie’s day-to-day lifestyles. The author’s writing style is very appropriate for the age group which this book is aimed to entertain.
The illustrations in this book are very colorful, and they represent diversity with the different skin tones used on the different characters. There are many different settings illustrated in this book. Those include the girls’ rooms, kitchens, dance studios, and lastly, the recital place in the city. Throughout the book, there are numerous illustrations that represent action and movement within the two girls and their dance peers.
I really enjoyed this book and its beautiful illustrations. I love to dance myself so I was interested in this book as soon as I saw the two ballerinas on the cover. I liked the life comparisons it made between these two girls who have a rather large age gap. The end was also very cute whenever the little girl got to meet the older girl, who happens to be her idol. This book portrays determination, perseverance, and dreams. Those are all really awesome aspects to bring up in a children’s book, and I would recommend it to any young child (ages 4-8) who takes an interest in ballet or dance in general.
Reviewed by Ciara Gable