A fierce storm visits a magical farm where fairies, gnomes and mice freely mingle with a few chosen humans.
The titular lagoon only appears when conditions are just right; the Running River must flood enough to fill a basin where tall trees now grow from ground that was formerly covered by river water. After a particularly rough storm, Tiptoes Lightly and her friends Greenleaf the Sailor, Pepper Pot, Pine Cone and Jeremy Mouse journey up the swollen waters in search of this legendary spot. They’re in luck. The Lost Lagoon is there, beautiful and serene, a perfect place to camp out. Meanwhile, the humans who live in the farmhouse—Tom Nutcracker and his sister June Berry and their father Farmer John—entertain themselves with stories from a book called The Adam Tales. After the storm has passed, Tom takes a midnight ride on his pony and meets up with Greenleaf for a boat ride all the way to the moon. Luckily, his father is understanding and doesn’t punish Tom too badly for sneaking out in the middle of the night. Mythical creatures and humans alike bask in the opportunity to explore and listen to each other’s stories about how the world came to be. Down, who also provides the simple but effective illustrations throughout the book, treats his characters with just the right playful touch, encouraging readers to suspend their disbelief and engage with impossible creatures. Evoking classic creation myths, Down weaves into his narrative fantastical explanations of the first man and woman. His book also nods to Thornton Burgess with its inclusion of fables to explain things such as why slugs have no shells. Adults may regret a lack of complexity and find some of the exchanges slightly saccharine, but children will inherently realize this collection offers an antidote to the viral spread of movie-based narratives and those containing more than a hint of violence. The stories are easy enough that accomplished early readers can enjoy them independently; they are also perfect for out-loud reading sessions at bedtime.
Sweet stories to share with children while storms rage outside.