Speck: An Itty-Bitty Epic

Knopf. Mar. 2024. 40p. Tr $19.99. ISBN 9780593301975.
K-Gr 3–In her second book, Meganck (People are Wild) follows a tiny speck in the ocean as it looks for a place to stay and grow. This speck’s quest is compared to a barnacle, a child, and more abstractly, the stars. In contrast to the first book’s shorter text and succinct message, this one’s meaning is less obvious. Although targeted for young readers, the intentions are abstract; the journey to find a place in the world is hard and “the safest thing to do is hide,” but a hidden speck would “miss out on the adventure.” Reading this story with older children can lead to philosophical discussions and connections. The illustrations are undoubtedly the highlight of the book, showing a vibrant ocean world with colorful sea creatures painted in bright watercolors.
VERDICT While the illustrations are sure to capture the attention of children, the deeper message may be best appreciated by older readers. A supplemental purchase.

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