The reader learns about the inner workings of a piano as well as watches a child’s successful piano recital in the sweet picture book My Piano by Jen Fier Jasinski, illustrated by Rita Bagdi (Gnome Road Publishing, September 2023). With a natural rhyme, the book begins with a progressive “This is the house that Jack built” pattern, showing the legs, pedals, frame, soundboard, strings, dampers, and of course keys of the keyboard. Then, with a pause, the young girl, who has led this tour, begins her performance with a similar rhyming scheme, but without the progressive build-up on each page.
I really enjoyed the two styles of writing. Sometimes, a picture book written in the style of the “House that Jack Built” becomes tiring. It was a relief to watch the girl sitting down to perform. The illustrations are fantastic. The nonfiction pages that illustrate the parts of the piano provide a highlight of the named part of the piano, and when the girl sits to play, the music is represented by glittery swirls, and the poem does feel like it swells and flows like the swirls and text does. The (probably digitally) painted illustrations have soft edges and a bright feel throughout the book.
The end matter provides a few sentences about each of the parts of the piano, as well as tips for preparing for your own piano recital. My Piano would be a great addition to a music classroom. It also would be a wonderful gift for any young pianist preparing for his or her own recital.
I voluntarily read and reviewed an advance review copy of this book provided by the publisher via NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own.