Julie Fortenberry has an MFA from Hunter College. Her abstract paintings have been in the Whitney Museum of American Art. But for the last 16 years she’s been painting for preschoolers and kindergarteners. Her first illustrations were for High Five and Ladybug magazines. She illustrated Eve Bunting’s Pirate Boy, and a series of Sydney Taylor Notable books by Rabbi Jamie Korngold.
She is the author and illustrator of Pearl Goes to Preschool, The Artist and the King, and Lily’s Cat Mask which received a Kirkus starred review and was added to Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library.
Darcy’s First Sleepover will be published by Macmillan/Ottaviano in 2021.
The softly colored illustrations, outlined in black, are very appealing and feature a lovely double-page spread of Pearl and her mother attending a classic ballet performance…Tender and sweet comfort. —Kirkus Reviews
In this winsome, taut story, a timid child warms to the idea of preschool with her mother’s tactical nudging and her own ingenuity.
Created digitally, the artwork depicts the children, in particular, with a winsome quality that suits the story well. A pleasing picture book for young dance lovers.
Consider the delicious normalcy to be found in “Pearl Goes to Preschool”, a chic little picture book by Julie Fortenberry for 2- to 5-year-olds.
VERDICT A recommended purchase for back-to-school collections.
Pearl feels safe in expressing herself, and her mom’s gentle guidance helps Pearl take ownership over big decisions. Pearl Goes to Preschool is a real treat.