Wood and Lynch pair once more (Grandad’s Prayers of the Earth, 1999) to celebrate the simple joys of individual moments.
Every action, whether it be smelling the earth after a rain shower or savoring the first bite of a red, ripe strawberry, is unique and personal. “There are so many things in the world, / so many important things / to be taught, / to be shown” Wood imparts, “But the best things… / No one can discover them but you.” Children strive to find a place in the world where they feel significant. Allowing them to own these moments, and cherish them, is an important step, and Wood’s articulation of this truth should strike chords of recognition in both children and adults. Lynch’s softly smudged oil paintings, drenched in sun- and moonlight, match the gentle flow of this sensory walk through nature. City-dwellers may not have experienced all of these specific actions, but they should feel encouraged to come up with a list of their own.
A touching and genuine exhortation that just teeters on the edge of sentimentality but is lifted by a strong purpose: Self-discovery can be found in the most surprisingly simple of moments. (Picture book. 6 & up)