Children's Joanne Ryder Under Your Feet

ISBN 13: 9780027779554

Under Your Feet

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9780027779554: Under Your Feet

A collection of poems about nature and wildlife, spanning all the seasons of the year.

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From School Library Journal:

Kindergarten-Grade 3-- Like its companion books--Step into the Night (1988) and Mockingbird Morning (1989, both Four Winds)--Ryder's latest close-up look at nature urges readers to search carefully for the small hidden creatures around them. They are everywhere in Nolan's now-familiar photorealistic, earth-toned watercolors--in holes and tunnels, under rocks, or protected by the hazy green water of a pond. Unlike the first two volumes, which cover brief periods--the twilight hours and early morning--this one spans the seasons, hinting at warm weather dens and hiding places, as well as subterranean winter burrows. The poetic text pairs the actions of a boy with those of the creatures hiding nearby. The sophisticated poetry and abrupt jumps from season to season will better suit school-age children than preschoolers. Many of Nolan's paintings exhibit a deft use of perspective that gives them a three-dimensional quality. One painting cleverly shows the shadows of Canada geese on the ground, while another features animals hidden murkily in the mud. There is, however, an unevenness to the illustrations. Lifelike creatures and natural objects are sometimes coupled with the flat lines of saplings, lifeless blades of grass, or one-dimensional animals. Despite this, text and illustrations do provide a quietly appealing nature lesson. --Susan Scheps, Shaker Heights Public Library, OH
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Publishers Weekly:

Like their Step into the Night and Mockingbird Morning , Ryder and Nolan's quiet picture book portrays a child observing natural wonders. This time Ryder asks readers to be aware of creatures who live under the earth's surface--moles, worms, salamanders, snakes, otters. The tone is reverent and hushed, the illustrations splendidly vibrant and accurate. A cross-section of earth reveals the boy above tying his hiking boot while below him "Thousands of worms / huddle in balls / deep in the ground, / breathing quietly / through their soft skins." Ryder attempts to unify the book structurally with frequent mention of the seasons and by repeating the refrain "Can you feel them?" but the devices often seem strained. Rather than suggesting that the reader imagine scenes below, the author becomes overly literal when she asks, "Can you feel jumping mice dreaming / of warm spring nights?" or "Can you feel worms resting / safe and warm / all winter long?" Nevertheless, both language and art offer an intriguing look at the world under children's feet. Ages 5-8.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Joanne Ryder
Published by Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing (1990)
ISBN 10: 0027779556 ISBN 13: 9780027779554
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