Stacey Schuett is the illustrator of Purple Mountain Majesties, by Barbara Younger (Dutton), in addition to many other books for young readers. She lives in Cazadero, California.
Gr 1-3‘What's happening around the world when it is one o'clock a.m. in England? Lots! Exploring this fascinating concept, this story takes children around the world to show what's going on at the exact same moment in other areas. A time-zone map on the endpapers, which includes the times and names of places shown in the pictures, allows readers to follow the action around the globe. Schuett's illustrations, each overlaid onto a map, capture the mystery of early morning hours on the plains of Kenya, the freshness of a new day dawning in India, and the subtle humor of a dog running off with a worker's lunch in Russia at noon. Her story takes readers through busy cities and family homes, rainforests and swampland, exploring all varieties of settings. The poetic text encourages them to look deeper into the pictures for hidden details. A book that is perfect for sparking an interest in geography, emphasizing the amazing concept that at the same moment we are getting ready to sleep, other people are starting a new day.‘Christina Linz, Alachua County Library District, Gainesville, FL
An experienced illustrator, first-time author Schuett (I'll See You in My Dreams) proves as nimble with words as with a paintbrush. At 8:00 p.m., a child tucked in her bed in Boston listens to her father read a story. But at that very moment, ``Somewhere else, in velvety darkness, elephants sleep standing up, swaying gently from side to side.'' A single moment telescopes into an entire day as Schuett highlights contemporaneous activities around the world, setting her text and illustrations atop background maps. Gently scumbled and luminously colored, these maps supply the geographical location for each vignette. Intimate prose and atmospheric images blend the mundane (``People go to work, stores open''), the exotic (``jaguars glide through the jungle''), the mysterious (``A boy hides a note for a friend to find''), and the humorous (a dog runs off with a worker's lunch). While youngest readers will grasp the basic idea of different ``times'' in different locations, older children will recognize the orderly ``zones'' as the book's vignettes progress from morning to night (and bedtime). More advanced readers may take up the stickier abstractions of the international dateline. So soothingly written and structured that it can double as a bedtime book, this unique work affords an extraordinarily compelling, clear approach to a complex topic. Ages 4-8. (Aug.)