Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

The Cobble Street Cousins: Special Gifts

The Cobble Street Cousins: Special Gifts

Cynthia Rylant
Illustrator:   Wendy Anderson Halperin 
Fiction  Series
For ages 7 to 9
Simon and Schuster, 2000   ISBN: 978-0689817151

Lily, Tess and Rosie are now well settled in Aunt Lucy's house. Ahead of them lies the Winter Vacation and they are planning out what they are going to do for the three school-free weeks. As is so often the case, it is Lily, the brain-stormer, who comes up with a good idea. She thinks that the girls should learn how to sew. It is something that suits the homebody Rosie, and it is a skill the future actress, Tess, will be able to put to good use if she has to make her own costumes some day.

The perfect person to go to for help is Mrs. White, and elderly lady the girls befriended at the beginning of their stay with Aunt Lucy. The old lady is happy to teach the girls and they in turn are happy to help her sort her mementos; there are photographs, letters and much more for the girls to look through and organize. As they work, they discover that Mrs. White has some wonderful stories to tell.

Simply told and filled with charming black and white illustrations, this little book tells the continuing story of the Cobble Street cousins in such a way that the reader feels as if he or she is a part of things. It is warm and speaks of the good and simple things in life; things like enjoying making things with ones hands, seasonal celebrations, spending time together, and appreciating the stories of ones elders that are both entertaining and full of history.