Sky Boys: How They Built the Empire State Building
by Deborah Hopkinson
School Library Journal
K-Gr 4–Hopkinson and Ransome chronicle the construction of this famous building through the eyes of a young boy. The present-tense text gives the book a true You are there feel as the author describes both the actual building process and its significance as a symbol of hope during the Depression era. The pacing is never rushed, but at the same time it moves along at an energetic clip that matches the speed that characterized the construction of this National Historic Landmark. Ransomes stunning oil paintings vary in perspective as readers look up at what was once the tallest building in the world, and then down from dizzying heights as workers perch on girders on the 47th floor, feeding pigeons while taking a break for beef stew and coffee. An authors note reflects the painstaking and careful research done by both author and illustrator to ensure as authentic a presentation as possible. This is a fascinating look at a slice of American history and a worthwhile addition to any collection.–Grace Oliff, Ann Blanche Smith School, Hillsdale, NJ
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