NORTH, SOUTH, EAST, WEST by Margaret Wise Brown
Kirkus Star

NORTH, SOUTH, EAST, WEST

by , illustrated by
Age Range: 4 - 8
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

A previously unpublished story from the author of Goodnight Moon takes flight in this poignant, charming picture book.

A little bird readies herself to fly from her nest. From her mother, the little bird learns how to move effortlessly on the wind and avoid storms. In their nest in the sycamore tree, the mother bird sings a song as the little bird asks, “When I fly away, which is best, / North, South, East, or West?” Soon the little bird is off on her own under the light of the sun. She first flies to the North, where chilly white reigns: much too cold to build a nest. The South, with its jumble of greens and flowers, proves too hot. Beside the sea in the West, the little bird remembers the sycamore tree. Clearly, “the East was home.” Unfolding at a gentle pace, Brown’s story ruminates on the idea of leaving—and returning to—home with great compassion. Likewise, the author exposes unspoken depths that make up the parent-child bond, offering nuance and complexity in measured words. Full of simple, curved shapes set in evocative alignments, Pizzoli’s illustrations complement the story well. They’re mostly unadorned and restrained, underlining the strength of simplicity in jump-starting the imagination. A bittersweet ending makes this homecoming feel altogether real.

Equal parts wistful and uplifting—a small triumph. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Jan. 24th, 2017
ISBN: 978-0-06-026278-5
Page count: 40pp
Publisher: Harper/HarperCollins
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1st, 2016




MORE BY MARGARET WISE BROWN

ChildrenCHRISTMAS IN THE BARN by Margaret Wise Brown
by Margaret Wise Brown
ChildrenTHE DEAD BIRD by Margaret Wise Brown
by Margaret Wise Brown
ChildrenGOODNIGHT SONGS by Margaret Wise Brown
by Margaret Wise Brown

MORE BY GREG PIZZOLI

ChildrenWHAT'S A BANANA? by Marilyn Singer
by Marilyn Singer
ChildrenDRAGON WAS TERRIBLE by Kelly DiPucchio
by Kelly DiPucchio
ChildrenGOOD NIGHT OWL by Greg Pizzoli
by Greg Pizzoli

SIMILAR BOOKS SUGGESTED BY OUR CRITICS:

ChildrenBREATHE by Scott Magoon
by Scott Magoon
ChildrenAND THEN IT'S SPRING by Julie Fogliano
by Julie Fogliano
ChildrenWHEN THE WORLD IS DREAMING by Rita Gray
by Rita Gray