Hello, My Name is Ruby and The Eye of the Tiger


The other night, ML told me her favorite song is the “Eye of Tiger.”  Confused and wondering when she heard this Survivor song from 1982… I started singing “I am the eye of the tiger.”  She looked at me strange.  Then started singing a song with a different beat and different words… “I have the eye of the tiger.”

A conversation with a coworker and the internet helped me discover ML’s favorite song is actually called “Roar” by Katy Perry.  ML and I have one thing in common.  Both of our lyrics are wrong.  In the Survivor song, the correct lyrics are “It’s the eye of the tiger.”  In Katy Perry’s song, it’s “I got the eye of the tiger.”  Close enough.  ML always makes up words when she doesn’t remember the lyrics but remembers the tune.  Apparently, I do too.

You’re probably wondering what this has to do with a picture book named Hello, My Name is Ruby by Philip Stead.  Well… last night we read this book.  Halfway through, ML started singing “I am the eye of the elephant.”

Once again, I was perplexed.  Then, I looked closely at the elephant illustration composed of hundreds of red birds.  Ruby, a mostly yellow bird, served as the eye.  I thought about putting a link to this illustration, but decided you need to read the whole book.  However, follow this link and scroll to the bottom of the page.  You can view a speedy version of Philip Stead’s creative process showing him drawing the book cover.  http://us.macmillan.com/hellomynameisruby/PhilipStead

Among the books written by Philip Stead is A Sick Day for Amos McGee.  His wife, Erin Stead, won the Caldecott Medal in 2011 for her illustrations in A Sick Day for Amos McGee.  It’s the highest honor for illustrations an artist can receive.  The  Association for Library  Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association,  awards this medal.  A committee of fifteen choose the winner.  On Monday, January 27 this year’s winner will be announced.

This weekend, ML and her friend will award a Mock Caldecott medal to 1 one of 10 books.  Tomorrow, I’ll list the titles I’m bringing home for consideration.  Hello, My Name is Ruby is one.   If You Want to See a Whale illustrated by his wife is another.  Stay tuned… next Monday, I’ll announce their choice.

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