Keeping the City Going

S. & S./Atheneum/Caitlyn Dlouhy. Apr. 2021. 40p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781534493773.
PreS-Gr 2–A book from the first year of the pandemic. As children observe from their windows, “the voice of the city is low and the streets are almost empty.” New York City is strangely quiet except for workers such as delivery trucks, taxi drivers, firefighters, and EMTs. Each evening, windows fill with people making noise to thank the workers and to say, “We are all still here and we are here together.” Detailed color drawings depict the urban environment, its workers and their vehicles in full-page spreads with a few vignettes, alongside a matter-of-fact text. The postage carrier and the doctor gaze back at the reader, reinforcing the observational standpoint; these are snapshots of the essential workers who are “keeping the city going.” An author’s note provides further context.
VERDICT A thoughtful book of gratitude for the essential workers with a nod to the unifying theme that we are #allinthistogether. An important title, it will open the door for discussion of the pandemic and its effects.

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