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Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel


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About the Author

Virginia Lee Burton (1909-1968) was the talented author and illustrator of some of the most enduring books ever written for children. The winner of the 1942 Caldecott Medal for THE LITTLE HOUSE, Burton's books include heroes and happy endings, lively illustrations, and a dash of nostalgia. She lived with her two sons, Aristides and Michael, and her husband George Demetrios, the sculptor, in a section of Gloucester, Massachusetts, called Folly Cove. Here she taught a class in design and from it emerged the Folly Cove designers, a group of internationally known professional artisans. She is the author of many classic children's picture books, including MIKE MULLIGAN AND HIS STEAM SHOVEL and KATY AND THE BIG SNOW.


K-Gr 3-Author/illustrator Virginia Lee Burton's classic tale comes to life in this jubilant orchestral rendition. Composer and conductor Stephen Simon makes use of strings, brass, winds, and percussion in the telling of the tale, but no other instrument is used as effectively as the Irish bagpipes that present Mike's theme. Narrated by Yadu, this production faithfully follows the story of Mike Mulligan and his steam shovel, Mary Ann, as they prove their worth in the face of new technology. The 18-minute story appears twice on the CD-at the beginning and then again following segments that provide background information on the story, the author, and the composer's various musical techniques. There's also a vocal performance by opera singer James Shaffran of Mike Mulligan's theme song, a jazzy, infectious tune that will have kids singing along. Burton's story still strikes a chord despite its 1939 copyright, and Simon's joyful orchestration is sure to win new fans.-Kathleen Kelly MacMillan, Maryland School for the Deaf, Columbia Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

This is fun both in its text and gray crayon drawings. Mike Mulligan remains faithful to his steam shovel Mary Anne, against the threat of the new gas and diesel-engine contraptions, and digs his way to a surprising and happy ending. The New Yorker

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