Jazz on a Saturday Night

Book review by
Patricia Tauzer, Common Sense Media
Jazz on a Saturday Night Book Poster Image
Kids will groove to this toe-tapping treasure.

Parents say

age 10+
Based on 1 review

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Positive Messages
Violence & Scariness

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that kids will be drawn in by this exciting rhyming introduction to "America's classical music" and its pioneers. Notes and a CD are included to help readers get started on their journey into sound and rhythm.

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Parent Written byFAMILIES-SCHOOLS June 5, 2010


At this age children begin to identify images but if we use them to foster positive sharing, more likely others will agree because at the age of 3 based on rese... Continue reading

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What's the story?

On one fictional Saturday night, eight great jazz musicians get together for an evening of be-bopping magic. Each one, from Miles Davis to Ella Fitzgerald, in his or her turn, jumps in to the mix, and before long the whole room is feeling the beat.

Is it any good?

Inspired by their life-long love of jazz, illustrators Leo and Diane Dillon have put together their dream team of musicians to create "an evening of jazz immortality." In be-bopping language and poster-like illustrations, they capture the excitement and energy that such a session might create. Anyone new to the jazz form, or even the veteran, is sure to catch their enthusiasm.

In a perfectly balanced collage of sound and sight, jazz comes alive in award-winning artwork. Painted in what might be called a graphic style, some scenes focus on the musicians themselves, who with eyes closed, seem to be playing or singing from the soul. Others show an audience whose members are jumping, jiving, and otherwise pulled into the captivating music that flows around them like "a river of melody sketched in dim light." Everyone is having a good time, and the reader will, too. True to form, the Dillons have created another masterpiece to join the other award-winning books in their oeuvre.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about jazz as an art form, the various instruments played, and the eight jazz pioneers, all of whom play together on one magical night in this book. Once they have read the book a couple of times, readers can listen to the CD that will give sound and further explanation to what they have read. They might talk about the instruments they like best, which one they might like to play, or at least learn more about.

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