Tuesday, July 7, 2015
A Rock Can Be ... Written by Laura Purdie Salas and illustrated by Violeta Dabija. Millbrook Press, 2015. $21.99 ages 3 and up
It's sand, pebble, stone.
Each rock tells a story,
a tale of its own.
A rock can be a ...
It took me ages to get a copy of A Leaf Can Be (2012), and then I waited impatiently for a copy of Water Can Be (2014). I am happy to say that I had pre-ordered my copy of A Rock Can Be (March, 2015). I am still late telling you all about it.
It is equally as beautiful as the first two in this stellar series. Laura Purdie Salas is a master wordsmith. She makes the absolute best word choice decisions, and graces the pages of this book (and the others) with rhyming couplets in celebration of all that a leaf, water or a rock can be.
We find rock in a variety of forms and it has many uses. Ms. Salas describes some of them, leaving her audience to consider other words and ways to give meaning to their purpose in our world.
A rock is a rock,
our Earth in your hand.
Our world's full of rocks,
some simple, some grand."
Isn't that all the incentive you need to try to come up with some further ideas? Each couplet is placed on a page of its own on beautifully illustrated artwork, done in digital collages. Using bold color and radiant light, Violeta Dabija is able to interpret the word images fully.
The final pages add impressive information concerning each of the couplets, while offering a clear explanation for its inclusion:
"Lake skimmer: Have you every skipped a stone across a lake? A flat round stone works best. If you fling it at the right angle, it might bounce over the surface of the water. The world record is more than fifty skips."
There is also a glossary and a list for further reading. If you want to use more nonfiction during story time, this is one of those perfect books. It leaves room for discussion and encourages thoughtful writing. It is sure to encourage kids to get outdoors and have a closer look at the beauty in nature that surrounds them.