Two incredible talents worked together to bring us one of the most stunningly lovely books of the year. It explores the different ways that spirals and swirls appear in nature. There are the animals curled up for the winter underground, shells, unfurling ferns, hedgehogs, octopus tentacles, whirlpools and tornadoes. This book is a masterpiece of simplicity and complexity, just like the swirls that it speaks about.
With verse by Joyce Sidman, winner of a Newbery Honor and illustrations by Caldecott winner Beth Krommes, this book is immediately something special. The two have brought readers a poem spiraled inside intensely lovely images. One gets the sense of unwinding a spiral when reading the verse, as it loops and dances. The illustrations too are filled with a movement that is natural and free.
There is a simplicity about the verse that is misleading. Sidman’s verse is tight and well crafted, showing a restraint and skill. Krommes’ illustrations on the other hand are filled with details, lines of motion, and jewel tones. Astonishingly lovely, the illustrations have a fully dimensional feel to them and celebrate the swirl and spiral to great effect.
Highly recommended, this book successfully celebrates shape, design, science and nature in a single beautiful work. Appropriate for ages 3-6.
Reviewed from library copy.
Check out the book trailer to see the illustrations for yourself:
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