Sayre and Jenkins (Vulture View, 2007, etc.) collaborate again, here exploring the habits of squirrels.
Four squirrel species native to the U.S. are introduced, but Jenkins’ cut-paper collages focus on the eastern fox squirrel. Sayre’s simple verses are delivered in short, staccato rhythms, occasionally asking readers to speculate or reflect. “Squirrels chirp. / Squirrels drink. / Can you guess / what squirrels think?” (A groundhog is pictured, without comment, in the accompanying spread.) The pictures nimbly extend the compressed text, showing a squirrel fleeing an avian predator and digging to bury acorns. An ensuing spread shows a row of acorns, buried in the earth below a dusting of snow. “Five are hidden. / Will they sprout?” A page turn shows four acorns in various stages of sprouting, while the fifth, sporting a small hole in its surface, remains inert. Additional information about squirrel habitat is appended, along with suggestions for fostering it by planting trees.
Apt verse and appealing visuals provide young naturalists with a springboard for discussion and further discovery. (notes, bibliography of adult sources, website) (Informational picture book. 3-7)