Looking for Yesterday

Candlewick. Aug. 2019. 32p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9781536204216.
PreS-Gr 2–A young boy had such a great time yesterday at an amusement park with his granddad that he tries to figure out a way to “go back and do it all again.” Using scientific calculations, he reasons he would have to travel faster than light to get back. But no vehicles he knows go that fast. He also rules out a time machine, a “super hypersonic rocket,” and shrinking himself to fit into a wormhole in space—if he could even find one. When he asks for help, his granddad takes out a photo album. As they pore over it together recalling happy times, Granddad tells the boy that wonderful days experienced in the past make fine memories indeed. But he should be happy now, because each day affords an opportunity for “new adventure.” Jay’s humorous oil paintings executed in her signature folk-art style with elongated characters on thin legs, depict a bespectacled boy wearing plaid like his grandfather. Her familiar crackled finishes appear only in scenes of the past. The many spreads are packed with details that invite repeated viewings. Animals fly across the sky, ice cream takes many forms, and giant straws and lemons float in a stream. A “Yesterday Tours” bus filled with old folks displays 1957 in the front. The boy tries out a large unicycle clock time machine and a garbage can rocket.
VERDICT A wonderful choice for one-on-one sharing that demonstrates the value of science and contains a weighty message for both child and adult

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