Little Miss Liberty

  1. Little Miss Liberty
  2. Author: Chris Robertson
  3. Illustrator: Chris Robertson
  4. Publisher and Year: Chronicle Books, 2003
  5. Number of pages: 36
  6. Genre: Picture Book/Adventure Story
  7. Analysis: In Chris Robertson’s book, Little Miss Liberty, a young green statue girl named Little Miss Liberty is born to a French family in Paris and grows up quickly, soon wanting to leave France and explore the world. She does so, and eventually finds a fitting home on a small island off the coast of New York City, providing an enduring symbol that millions of Americans and people from around the world will hail as a symbol of freedom and that you can accomplish most anything in America if the conditions are right.
  8. So far as the picturebook codes in this story are concerned, the primary code in this book, much as in Extra Yarn and Rikki-Tikki-Tavi, was that of size. Throughout the book, Liberty is very small to begin with at the beginning in France, but by the end, when she assumes her place on Ellis island’s pedestal, she is very large, showing that she is the one in control of the situation by the time the book’s conclusion rolls around. When shown next to the humans, Liberty is much, much smaller as she is growing up, but is much more of a dominant presence at the end. The illustrations are quite beautiful, as they are both colorful yet simple for Liberty, her family, and the various landmarks she visits around the world before arriving in New York. The illustrator chose a lovely strategy of using many shades of watercolors for the different sites, and it is even more poignant when contrasted with the crisp blue skies and gorgeous sunsets that are also an integral part of the book’s artwork. Finally, when it comes to special features, the only one that comes to mind is the fact that there is a very brief summary of the statue’s life immediately following the book jacket, and the pages themselves are pretty text-averse too. The ideology of the book is that the author wants everybody to be able to fit in with their fellow Americans while at the same time not being insensitive to the most vulnerable among us. He shows this ideology by providing a safe, fun way to teach about tolerance and diversity through one of our nation’s greatest landmarks.
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