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INTO THE OUTDOORS by Susan Gal Kirkus Star


by Susan Gal & illustrated by Susan Gal

Age Range: 6 - 8

Pub Date: Oct. 11th, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-375-86958-7
Publisher: Knopf

An effervescent celebration of an overnight camping trip, with all the prepositions highlighted.

Embedded with plenty of examples for readers who might be a bit hazy on the role(s) prepositions play in language, the lively commentary follows a family up a mountain, over a bridge and under towering trees to a campground. This is followed by a hike, a cozy campfire (“Stars shimmer throughout the sky”) and a snuggle into sleeping bags. All the while in Gal’s bright, roughly surfaced woodland scenes, foxes, deer, a smiling bear and an unlikely cohort of other wildlife companionably look on or follow along as the oblivious hikers pass. As night deepens, visitors and forest residents alike bed down in their own places, and “[a]longside each other, we dream our dreams, / beside the lake and beneath the moon….”

Pedagogy takes a back seat to the elemental pleasures of being “outside in the great outdoors.” (Picture book. 6-8)