Silent Days, Silent Dreams - Allen Say
To some, art may seem unnecessary. For James Castle, however, it was essential. Born in 1899 and never able to hear, speak, or read, he lived in a world of Silent Days, Silent Dreams (Arthur A. Levine, $21.99) as he endured abuse and neglect. He had no way to communicate anything of his experiences… except for art. Even when his teachers confiscated his drawing materials, Castle would use burnt matchsticks and other cast-off items to make images however and whenever he could. Allen Say employs some of Castle’s own artistic methods in his nuanced story of Castle’s life, told through the eyes of Castle’s nephew. The recognition Castle received later in life is a poignant conclusion to a story that will leave an indelible mark on those who read it. Ages 9-12.