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A Leaf Can Be… by Laura Purdie Salas, illustrated by Violeta Dabija

Explore leaves throughout the seasons in this work of poetry.  The book focuses less on the science of leaves and much more on their impact, their dance on the wind, the shade they spill, and the color they give.  Told in verse that will work very well with young children, this book captures the wonder of nature.  

This is a dance of a book with rhymes and rhythms that really sparkle.  Much of the book is done in two-word lines that encapsulate one aspect of leaves, “sun taker” and “food maker,” and then in the autumn, “pile grower” and “hill glow-er.” 

Dabija’s art is jewel-toned and dynamic.  Her work is infused with merriment and joy.  She uses layers and transparency to great effect, capturing the beauty of nature.  One particularly striking page is her “frost catcher” where the layers of her work shine and the details are luminous. 

A great book to use in a unit about trees, this is also a book that invites exploring a poem.  Exquisite writing is well matched with rich art in this book.  Appropriate for ages 3-6.

Reviewed from library copy.