Friday, October 29, 2021

Canyons, Grand and Small

 I grew up hiking canyons in the southwest: the Grand Canyon, Zions, Bryce Canyon, and all the mountain canyons our family could hike along the Wasatch front. Now I live in the east – and guess what! There are canyons here, too. Like this one, at Taughannock State Park

So I was eager to read Kate’s book…

Over and Under the Canyon 
by Kate Messner; illus. by Christopher Silas Neal 
56 pages; ages 5-8
Chronicle Books, 2021  

theme: animals, desert, nature

High above, Swainson’s hawks soar, circling in the morning-blue sky.

Mom and kid are off on a hike – down, down, down into the magical world of a desert canyon. “What’s down there?” the kid asks. It’s a world of its own, mom replies. There are geckos and snakes, rabbits and roadrunners, kit foxes and cactus wrens.

What I like about this book: I love the adventure of exploring a new place (even if through the pages of a book). And I love the diversity of animal and plant life Kate Messner highlights. But even more, I love the verbs she uses: hawks soar and circle; stones crunch underfoot; beetles skitter. An eagle swoops. A gecko scoots. Mom and the kid scramble and squeeze over and around rocks. And I love that there is Back Matter: an author’s note about where this canyon is, and notes about the plants and animals featured in the book.

Beyond the Books:

Find out where there are canyons near you. Here are some of the more well-known canyons in the United States. But you might find a small, secret canyon in your neck of the woods.

Find out more about desert plants and animals. Here’s one resource to get you started.

Today we're joining Perfect Picture Book Friday, an event where bloggers share great picture books at Susanna Leonard Hill's website. Review copy provided by the publisher.

1 comment:

  1. You had me at Bryce Canyon! One of my favorite travel destinations, especially camping there. Kate Messner’s Over/Under books are favorites, too. I didn’t know about this one, so thank you! I’m looking forward to reading it.