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IN MY BACKYARD by Margriet Ruurs Kirkus Star


by Margriet Ruurs & illustrated by Ron Broda

Age Range: 3 - 10

Pub Date: March 13th, 2007
ISBN: 978-0-88776-775-3
Publisher: Tundra

At night, during the day and throughout all the seasons, a backyard is a wonderful place for spotting wildlife. Among the animals that Ruurs highlights are wrens, a toad, spiders, bats and an opossum. A single lyrical sentence describes the action, while clues in the illustration lead readers to surmise the season: “The glistening trail of a slow-moving snail shows me where it searched for leaves and berries.” Made entirely of sculpted paper and watercolors, Broda’s awe-inspiring scenes have a depth and realism that draw readers in. And as if that weren’t enough, readers get the extra treat of hidden details—he conceals a ladybug on each spread and a clue as to what animal will be featured on the next page. Backmatter includes a legend that tells more about the animals (and where the clues, but not the ladybugs, are hiding) and a guide to luring animals to your own backyard. A necessary library purchase, this is also sure to find a home on budding artists’ and young naturalists’ bookshelves. (Picture book. 3-10)