MY HEART IS A COMPASS by Deborah Marcero
Kirkus Star


by illustrated by
Age Range: 4 - 7
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A young girl journeys as far as her imagination can take her in search of something to bring to show and tell.

“Rose longed to be an explorer, a pioneer, a trailblazer. / Her heart was set on discovering something that had never been found… / …to bring to show-and-tell.” Her journey is a daunting one since she does not know where to find such a treasure—or even if it exists at all—but Rose has a brilliant strategy that starts with making a map with her imagination as a guide. First her hand-drawn road map takes her to the beach, then a similar sky map leads her right up through the exosphere. Next, an ocean map helps her navigate the high seas, and finally a railroad map takes her all the way to the very last train stop—all to no avail. Marcero makes excellent use of the picture book as a storytelling vehicle. Bright, open illustrations deftly capture Rose’s quest with landscapes that effortlessly dismantle the supposed opposition between the real and the imaginary. Alongside them, simple sentences move younger readers through page turns, including Rose’s maps presented in vibrant double spreads, as anticipation gently builds and delightfully resolves with Rose’s realization that her journey (and her maps!) is more than perfect for show and tell. That Rose is a girl of color simply makes the book all the sweeter.

Lovely, lively, and enchanting for new and veteran explorers alike. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: Nov. 6th, 2018
ISBN: 978-0-316-56176-1
Page count: 40pp
Publisher: Little, Brown
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15th, 2018


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