Are you an avid reader looking for your next "fix"? Can't bear to be without some form of reading material in your spare time? Welcome to my world! Whether you are seeking a new book to "feed your need", or you are an author seeking an unbiased point of view on your own recent masterpiece, this is the place to be. With life as with books, you never know where the next step might take you...

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Noonie's Masterpiece by Lisa Railsback

Hello, hello!
How are you today?  Good, I trust...if not, best wishes to one and all.  Just wanted to say thanks for stopping by Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers and making it a part of your busy day.  Only a few more days until BLOGMANIA!  Are you ready?  I am!  Remember, all the fun starts at the stroke of midnight, 04/30/10.  Mark your calendars and set your alarm!  Let's jump right into the post now shall we?  Filled with creativity and a penchant for getting into a tad bit of trouble, the featured title of the day is great for readers of all ages, though what you take away from the story may differ slighty.  Today's book of choice is....

Lisa Railsback
Art by

Think back to fourth grade.  Did you know what you wanted to be when you grew up?  Not like a super hero or president (not that either are impossible), but in the literal sense of your passion and desire.  Could you honestly put your fingerpaint wet hand upon the actual goal you wanted to reach?  Noonie Norton can.

Welcome to the creative world of Noonie.  She is a fourth grade artist extraordinare that knows (notice it doesn't just dreams, she KNOWS this) one day her artwork will be noticed for the treasure it truly is and catipult her to artistry fame.  Her constant companion, a library book....which she has had out for quite a while with no plans on returning it any time soon (imagine the late fees associated to a book out for over a year, perhaps two....scary).  It's not that she's a bad apple, she just can't bear to part with it.  So which book is THAT important to Noonie?  Masterpieces.  Any guess what's inside?  Only her favorite figures of the art world of all time ranging from Picasso to O'Keeffe, Andy Warhol and Vincent Van one is left out of the creative collection.  As with most artists though, making her big start is proving a little harder than anticipated.  Her random drawing of the Math teacher on the chalk board while she was suppose to be finishing a problem, met less than stellar remarks.  The jelly self portrait she drew on the school hallway floor only seemed a favorite of the mop that swept it away.  Even the combination artwork and artistic presentation that came off as a bit of mayhem went under appreciated.  What's a creative soul to do?

Lucky for Noonie, her prayers are answered in the form of an art contest being held at her school.  The subject of their artistic creation?  Their own their creative minds see them.  This poses a slight problem as her Mom passed away a few years ago and her Dad is constantly on the go with his work.  Will Noonie's portrait end up with a small stick figure of Noonie herself and nothing more or will inspiration strike when she least expects it?  Move with Noonie from her Blue Period through her Purple Period and see what awaits beyond for a truly artistic soul can not be hampered by the trials of life for long, no matter what age; creativity must flow!

Noonie's Masterpiece was about more than just her amazing artwork (though the artwork displayed throughout the book was just a perfect fit) was about life and the changes that occur everyday.  She's had her fair share of loss at such a young age and is dealing with it as best as she can.  Underneath all of her understanding though, she longs to be noticed, counted...especially by her Dad.  Though she claims to be fine with the arrangement and understands why he is away, I think deep down she still misses that face-to-face connection...that's where her art comes into play.  Through her artistic form of self-expression, Noonie not only uncovers her "family" but also a true friend in Math-ish Reno (clumsy though he may be, he is there when it counts), the person behind the mask of perfection in her classroom rival Sue Ann (perfect paint brushes and curls do not make a happy person), and even the true feelings of her little "alien" cousin Junior.

Overall, I loved this book! I was looking for a light break from a slighty heavier current read (at the time...finished that one now) and this was just the ticket (what can I say, the cover spoke to me). The creative way Noonie's story is presented combined with a message good for both young readers ("a brillant artist must try not to be afraid") and adult readers (the story presented has many underlying themes to ponder) makes this book a definite to check out the next time you are out and about.  Children will frolic with the imagination used (her family portrait drawing is a hoot) as well as learn a thing or two about many famous artists along the way.  Who knows?  You may even awaken the sleeping creative spirit within them.  For more fun with Noonie, check out all the added fun at her site (check the link in the book title at the top of this post), including my own family portrait (yep, that's my drawing at the bottom of this can do one as well with the downloadable art sheets at the site) and the excerpt of the book as seen below!  What can I say, a picture really can say a thousand words....

Noonie's Masterpiece

Review copy received courtesy of Lara at Chronicle Books. (THANK YOU!) For more information on this title and many more, check out their site, or follow along on Twitter!

Do you have any artistic-type talents or wish you did?  Do tell!  (Or share if you are so to your own drawing after completing and posting one of the art sheets from the site!  I love to see your renditions....that's mine over there.  Hey, I never claimed to be artsy now....)

Until next time....happy reading!


The1stdaughter said...

I saw this at the LA Times Festival of books and now I'm wishing I would have picked one up! (They even had a signed copy!) Anywho...great review! Love all the books encouraging kids to be creative recently.

Love your artwork too! :o)

Emidy @ Une Parole said...

I love that cover! That's enough to make me read this book. But it sounds really cute, too! A light read it great once in a while.

Gina said...

The1stdaughter: GASP! You passed on a book! For shame...LOL. Yes, the cover is definitely cute, but the story truly shines through. Definitely once to take a chance on. (Thanks for the artwork luv!) ^_^

Emidy: Cute, right? Absolutely on the light read part...I so needed it to and TADA! It served its purpose well.

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