Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Wake Up, Island

Wake Up, Island

Mary Casanova
Illustrator:  Nick Wroblewski 
Picture Book
For ages 4 to 7
University Of Minnesota Press, 2016   ISBN: 978-0816689354

A new day is beginning, and the sun is rising over the trees, sending “fingers” of sunlight across the lake to touch the shore where “water tickles island edges.” While a child still sleeps, the animals wake up and start their day.

A doe and her fawn “rise from their grass bed” and go to the shore to get a drink from the lake. Dew is glittering like jewels on the threads of a spider’s web, and hanging from a single thread a spider waits for a meal to come her way. A moose and her calf wade into the water to eat their breakfast, a meal of tender underwater greens. The heron too relies on the lake for its breakfast. Like a “two-stilt statue” it stands not moving, watching for a fish to swim into range.

A red squirrel, with is flaming red fur, eats the seeds in pinecones; and in the trees overhead ravens “gargle greetings” and chickadees call.

Finally the child’s eyes blink open, and after breakfast he trots down to the water to begin exploring the beach.

In this beautiful book, gorgeous woodcut illustrations are paired with a simple, yet lyrical and rich text to give readers a picture of what it is like to be on an island in a northwoods lake on a summer morning.

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