Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Random Shelf: Picture Books

Counting books are a dime a dozen. You have to offer terrific illustrations or a new concept in order to be recognized. One Nighttime Sea by Deborah Lee Rose is a wonderful counting book with a subtle environmental message in its end notes.

Just because we sleep during the night doesn’t mean that everything else is still. This is definitely the situation for sea creatures, which are often active during the night. “All night long while you are asleep, millions of sea creatures move through the deep. ONE blue whale calf swims close to its mother.” Awwww. The little baby blue whale calf. Children are drawn to baby animals, especially unique baby animals. We’re on the right foot!

We count all the way up to 10, meeting 2 humpback whale fathers, 3 white belugas, four spider crabs, and other creatures in the sea. “10 turtle hatchlings plunge into the dust” and “TEN nimble basket stars spread out their arms.”

And now….we count backward!

9 silly nudibranchs…8 parrotfish….seven masked butterflies….until “ONE brand-new seal pup discovers the day.”

Beautiful illustrations (Steve Jenkins is the illustrator-you have to check out his books) of adorable and amazing creatures fill the pages, while a slowly rollicking rhyme moves the book along. Further information about the sea animals-many endangered-is included at the end. I love this book!

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