Along the River

tr. from Portuguese by Jane Springer. illus. by Vanina Starkoff. 32p. Groundwood. Apr. 2017. Tr $17.95. ISBN 9781554989775.
K-Gr 3—Life on a river is an adventure; that's the message of this playful picture book from Brazil. "You'll have to discover your own way and your own rhythm while continuing to steer your course." Starkoff's minimal text and vibrant folk-style acrylic illustrations create a jovial feeling through thick lines and large splashes of color. Food, music, laughter, and fun prevail with a bright yellow background and spreads depicting the numerous vessels that travel down the river. Although the text is short and simple, the words are measured and flow like poetry. There is also signage on the boats that allows for additional reading. Overall, this feels inviting and provides a soothing read, although it lacks real depth or distinction.
VERDICT A narrative with a good flow and strong illustrations that will draw young children in for a quick read or art prompt. A solid purchase for most collections.

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