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IN THE WOODS by Elizabeth Spurr


by Elizabeth Spurr, illustrated by Manelle Oliphant

Age Range: 1 - 3

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2012
ISBN: 978-1-56145-582-9
Publisher: Peachtree

Following the same format as their first book, In the Garden (2012), Spurr and Oliphant continue the story of the same outdoors-loving young boy.

This time, he enjoys fishing while on a camping trip with his father. Again, individual words paired on each page make up the rhyming text. Spurr’s staccato poetry fits nicely with the rhythms of fishing: “Boy baits. / Boy waits. // Bee buzzes. / Boy dozes. // Pole shakes. / Boy wakes. // Line jiggles. / Fish wiggles.” When the young boy catches his fish, he brings it back to his father to cook. The two enjoy roasted marshmallows and some campfire music before hunkering down in their tent. The rounded, colored-pencil lines and soothing watercolors in blues and greens set the scene nicely and soften the clipped verse. As with the first book, the boy accomplishes his outdoor feat solo. Safety-conscious readers may balk at a young child fishing near a brook with no adult supervision, but a close inspection of the illustrations reveals that he is within view of his father.

While fishing may not be as common an early-childhood activity as gardening, this is a likable follow-up. (Board book. 18 mos.-3)