When spring finally pushes out the last traces of winter each year, there is a renewed energy that can be seen everywhere around us. This book is the observations of a young boy as he frolics outdoors on a beautiful spring day. His first revelation: no more heavy clothes! Thin pants and short sleeves give a feeling of lightness that mirrors the lightness of spirit. He follows the streams that swell with melted snow, and then plays in the puddles that collect after a spring storm. He finds tiny leaf buds and gently peels away their layers to see the tiny leaves inside. Sprouts are coming up all over the place since the ground is warm now, and birds offer their serenades as they build their nests. The hibernators wake up and come out from their winter homes. Gardens are carefully planted. Best of all, the days get longer and the sunset comes very slowly in the late evening so that little ones can stay up to see the stars beginning to twinkle in the sky and hear the night songs of the frogs and crickets. A section at the end of the book offers a wide variety of activities for children to do on their own. There are projects to make and suggestions for observations of spring events. The text is lyrical and rhythmic; it echoes the lightheartedness of spring. The illustrations are striking cut-paper creations that have amazing dimensionality. The papers were layered so that shadows are evident, and some were curled and fringed, both of which are techniques for giving depth to the images. There is a feeling of movement present in all of the illustrations that will engage young readers. 2002, The Millbrook Press,
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PreS-Gr 1-A companion to the author's It's Fall (Millbrook, 2001). The excitement of spring is in the air as a boy explores the world around him. Cut-paper illustrations enhanced by hand painting give a three-dimensional look to the scenes. A double-page spread of a torrential river made up of marbled paper and paint splatters is especially evocative of the season. However, reading aloud is made somewhat awkward by text that sometimes rhymes and sometimes doesn't. For example: "One day we spot a robin./Then soon we see red-winged blackbirds and/a bright goldfinch. Early in the morning we/hear the birds sing. They cheep and warble/and trill-it's spring!" Still, children will enjoy this spring scavenger hunt as they browse the richly detailed illustrations. The book closes with a list of nature activities.-Alison Kastner, Multnomah County Library, Portland, OR Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Glaser and Swan team up once again in this eye-catching and informative ode to nature, the second in a series of seasonal titles (It's Fall!, 2001, etc.). Speaking through the voice of a narrator, Glaser uses simple language to convey the changes brought by spring: warmer weather, budding plants, and awakening animals. "I run outside in thin pants and short sleeves. / No thick heavy winter coat bundled around me. / I skip and leap and feel light and free. / Fresh air rushes all over me." On the next page, "Creeks and streams are starting to flow." In cut-paper collage created from hand-painted papers, Swan's gorgeous depiction of water rushing down a mountainside comes alive with swirling marbled paper and a slate-blue sky flecked with white. In the foreground, sculptured, sun-colored daffodils shoot up around the rocks. Later, Swan's palette turns deep blue and mossy green as a troupe of wide-eyed "spring peepers and bullfrogs sing" amidst the rushes. The narrator and his dog, who's howling at the moon, appear as small silhouettes below the star-dappled sky. In the end, Glaser suggests a series of "Nature Activities to Do in the Spring." A natural choice for springtime reading. (Picture book. 4-8)