John Burroughs Association Riverby AwardLupine AwardSkipping Stones Honor AwardYou might walk right by a vernal pool and not notice it.
Often mistaken for mere puddles in the woods, vernal pools are the source of life for many interesting creatures. If you look carefully, you can find them and be amazed! These secret pools form every year when low places on the forest floor fill up with rain and melted snow. They soon become home to hatching wood frogs, spotted salamanders, and fairy shrimp. Even in late summer and fall, when many vernal pools have shrunk to mud holes, creatures such as turtles and snakes rely on them for shelter and food. The Secret Pool introduces young readers to the wonders right underfoot as the voice of a vernal pool shares its secrets through the seasons, and sidebars provide fun facts on its inhabitants and the crucial role these small, often overlooked wetlands play in maintaining a healthy environment.
About the Author
Science writer Kimberly Ridley is an award-winning author of nonfiction books for children. Her joy is sharing her love of nature and writing with children through her books and school visits. Kimberly’s picture books, The Secret Pool (Kirkus starred review) and The Secret Bay, have received honors including Riverby Awards from the John Burroughs Association for “outstanding natural history books for young people.” Her newest book is Extreme Survivors: Animals That Time Forgot. A former magazine editor, Kimberly has written for publications including The Boston Globe, the Christian Science Monitor, and Downeast Magazine. She holds an MS in Science Journalism.
Rebekah Raye is an artist beloved for her bird and animal paintings and sculpture,
derived from her affinity with the natural world around her studio in East Blue
Hill, Maine. In Rebekah’s words, “My early interest in animals of all kinds continues to be the focus of
my painting and sculpture. Our pet chickens, geese, and catsas well as the wild fox, bobcat,
crows, and deerare my inspiration. The more I learn about the animals I
paint, the more I understand how we are all related.” Rebekah’s award-winning children’s books include The Very Best
Bed, Bear-ly There, The Secret Pool, and Swimming Home, all published by Tilbury House.
What People are Saying About This
With poetic text and informative sidebars, this beautiful book delightfully captures the drama and mystery of vernal pools. Dive in and get lost in this magical world. --Joyce Sidman, Newbery Honor winning children's author and winner of the 2013 NCTE Award for Excellence in Children's Poetry
It reads with the delight and dangers of a fairy tale, but it's grounded in science. --Holly Meade, illustrator of the Caldecott Honor winning Hush! A Thai Lullaby and other books
The Secret Pool is enchanting! I encourage parents, grandparents, and friends of children everywhere to read the book with a young one and then open the door to see if you can find a vernal pool. If you don't live in a region where vernal pools can be found, look for something else in nature that changes through the seasons and serves as a home for wildlife. --Cheryl Charles, Ph.D., Co-Founder, Children & Nature Network
It reads with the delight and dangers of a fairy tale, but it's grounded in science. --Holly Meade, illustrator of the Caldecott Honorwinning Hush!
A Thai Lullaby and other books