Magazine article Teacher Librarian

Emotional Palette

Magazine article Teacher Librarian

Emotional Palette

Article excerpt

Gelatt, Philip, and Tyler Crook. Petrograd. Oni Press, 2011. 264p. $29.99. 978-1-934964-44-6. Grades 9 and up. It is World War I, and the British spy network in Russia is crumbling. Cleary is not a great spy, yet he accidentally conceives of a mission so difficult as to be ludicrous: Kill Rasputin, the mad lover of the tsarina, before Russia can sign a treaty with England's foes. The anarchists with whom he allies himself are idealists, but they are not wrong about the terrible hand the monarchy has dealt the people, and Cleary knows this. Russia's own secret police long for peace, but they are also duplicitous, and he knows this, as well. The expressive, oppressive illustrations help color the emotional palette of the book, and thoughtful composition links the rich and the poor in a way that is both suggestive and disturbing, as though there is no trace of goodness in Rasputin's Russia, neither among the elite nor the people they crush. …

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