This lyrical text with iridescent watercolors invites readers to wonder how rivers begin, the paths they take, and their eventual outcomes. New vocabulary pertaining to rivers can be explored. 2000, Candlewick Press, $15.99. Ages 3 to 10. Reviewer: C. Henebry SOURCE: Parent Council, September 2001 (Vol. 9, No. 1)
- Children's Literature
Join in the journey of a river as it begins in the mountains. As the snow melts, trickles of water bubble, drip and then form a stream. A waterfall adds to the "Snowfalls of water/springfuls of water/streamfuls of water/coming together into a river." The river races down the mountainside, flows beneath a bridge and runs through a meadow. It becomes busier and busier as it moves through the city. Then it meanders through the marshes, making its way to the sea. Journey's end. There is no heavy-handed ecological message here. It isn't needed. An appreciation for nature is implicit in the poetic text and splendid watercolor illustrations which flow together, capturing the essence of the waterway, from a bucolic scene where cows come to drink and people aimlessly row boats, to the busy setting of the city where trains streak across the bridge and barges and ferries move past tall buildings and refineries. A two-page spread at the back of the book depicts the entire journey as the river wanders from the mountains to the sea. 2000, Candlewick Press, Ages 5 to 8, $15.99. Reviewer: Carolyn Mott Ford—Children's Literature
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3-In simple, rhythmic language, Hooper traces a river's course from its beginning in the mountains ("A small shining stream,/slipping over pebbles,/skidding round rocks,/bumping into roots") to its end ("Where the river reaches/the edge of the land,/waves wash the sand,/and fresh water meets salt water./-The journey is over"). Accompanied by Willey's delicately detailed and luminous watercolors, faintly reminiscent of Barbara Cooney's work, the book is a visual and aural delight from start to finish. The format is varied and engaging; the text is set off on each spread by a border, and spot art highlights the changing scenes and perspectives. A map of the entire river, with pivotal words defined (source, tributary, meanders), and a short index are appended. An exceptionally appealing book for recreational reading as well as information.-Judith Constantinides, formerly at East Baton Rouge Parish Main Library, LA Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
Trickling, bubbling, swirling, rushing, a river flows down from its mountain beginnings, past peaceful country and bustling city on its way to the sea. Hooper (The Drop in My Drink, 1998, etc.) artfully evokes the water's changing character as it transforms from "milky-cold / rattling-bold" to a wide, slow "sliding past mudflats / looping through marshes" to the end of its journey. Willey, best known for illustrating Geraldine McCaughrean's spectacular folk-tale collections, contributes finely detailed scenes crafted in shimmering, intricate blues and greens, capturing mountain's chill, the bucolic serenity of passing pastures, and a sense of mystery in the water's shadowy depths. Though Hooper refers to "the cans and cartons / and bits of old wood" being swept along, there's no direct conservation agenda here (for that, see Debby Atwell's River, 1999), just appreciation for the river's beauty and being. (Picture book/nonfiction. 7-9)