Celebrated picture book creators Chris Raschka and Vladimir Radunsky offer one possible answer to the age-old question: Who was Mother Goose?
We all love to hear Mother Goose rhymes and riddles. But did you know that there was a real Mother Goose who lived in Boston more than three hundred years ago? In 1692, Elizabeth Foster married a widower with ten children. His name was Isaac Goose, and after they married, Elizabeth became Mother Goose. She and Isaac had four more children together, and to help her care for such a big and boisterous family, Mother Goose sang songs and lullabies and made up rhymes and poems. Her nursery rhymes and stories were published at a print shop on Pudding Lane in Boston, though no copies of her book exist today. In a book featuring some of Mother Goose’s best-loved works, Vladimir Radunsky’s bright and humorous illustrations and Chris Raschka’s rhyming poems tell the little-known story of the Goose children, Isaac, and Elizabeth herself — the Mother Goose of Pudding Lane.
About the Author
Chris Raschka is an author and illustrator of many books for children. He is the illustrator of The Hello, Goodbye Window by Norton Juster and the author-illustrator of A Ball for Daisy, both Caldecott Medal winners. He also illustrated four poetry collections by Paul B. Janeczko and is the author-illustrator of The Cosmobiography of Sun Ra. Chris Raschka lives in New York City.
Vladimir Radunsky (1954–2018) illustrated many books for children, including On a Beam of Light: A Story of Albert Einstein by Jennifer Berne, and was the author-illustrator of such books as The Mighty Asparagus, You?,and I Love You Dude.
Whimsical gouache figures pop off bright backgrounds, vying for attention with black-pencil doodles. Some pages are filled with small, busily detailed pictures, such as portraits of all 14 children, others offer floating images, and a few feature two-page spreads. Some rhymes will be familiar, other won't, but the story of the Goose family should be new for most readers. This is a delightful offering, and, like previous titles from Raschka, should generate a lot of interest. Be prepared.
—Booklist (starred review)
Radunsky’s joyous, dreamlike gouache figures cavort across the spreads; pencil drawings and ghostly naïf-style images appear here and there, too, as if a toddler had scribbled on the pages...Happily, instead of concentrating on nostalgia, the longtime collaborators pursue the verses’ unadulterated silliness, creating a strange and wonderful effect.
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Published posthumously, Radunsky's gouache-and-pencil illustrations depict the Goose family, other people, and anthropomorphic animals; they have a jovial, sketchy quality to them, befitting the lively cadence of both Raschka's verse and the familiar nursery rhymes.