As soon as Julia Rothman let out a sneak peek of her latest book Hello NY, I was super excited. I was born and raised here (my husband too). I grew up on the upper west side when it had the vibe of Brooklyn today (where we live now). I’ve lived on 73rd st, 81st st, 97th st, 103rd st, 32nd st, St. Marks Ave. (Brooklyn) and now 6th Ave. (Brooklyn). My grandparents met on a beach in Coney Island and my nana schooled the people at the Lower East Side Tenement Museum about her experience living down there (she’s currently 97 years old). My mom used to get me a black and white cookie at MoMA and we also frequented the AMNH (still do). I have countless favorite places in Manhattan and Brooklyn and so many memories of how it used to be, yet there’s so much to discover still.
I love Julia’s book. I just know E. B White would have had Julia illustrate his love letter to NY, Here is New York. Whether you are from NY or not, there’s so much to see in this book and so many personal touches that I find fascinating like her dad’s memory of playing stickball out in the street as a kid, her memories of growing up on City Island and a conversational interview with an Egyptian cab driver who lives in Astoria. In addition to all of this and more, Julia’s illustrations are at once whimsical and full of rich character. I love this book. Get it now.