K-Gr 3-- A poetic evocation of a boy's solitary exploration of an uninhabited island. One summer's day a black youngster dashes along a seaside trail, past a lighthouse, over dunes, along wave - whipped shores, catching glimpses of rabbits scampering into bushes and geese flying overhead. ``Where does the trail lead?'' is the question posed throughout the brief narrative. There is a sense of loneliness, and yet readers will catch the boy's excitement as he strikes out along the trail, absorbing all of its sights and sounds. He enthusiastically shares his adventures at story's end with his family gathered around a campfire on the beach. Using a palette of muted violet, sienna, ochre, cobalt, and spruce green in his scratchboard illustrations, Pinkney enlivens his paintings with flicks of bright color. He effectively captures the remoteness, the abandonment of the setting, and the boy's spirit of untrammeled discovery. --Phyllis G. Sidorsky, National Cathedral School, Washington, DC
Brian Pinkney is one of the most celebrated talents in children's publishing. In his career he has won two Caldecott Honors, a Coretta Scott King medal, a Boston Globe-Horn Book Award, and three Coretta Scott King Honors. For Simon & Schuster he illustrated The Faithful Friend, which won the Caldecott Honor and Coretta Scott King Honor, Sukey and the Mermaid, which won the Coretta Scott King Honor, and The Adventures of Sparrowboy, which won the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award. He lives with his wife and two children in Brooklyn, New York — which is where this story takes place.