The First Day of May

Levine Querido. Mar. 2024. 40p. Tr $15.99. ISBN 9781646143825.
K-Gr 2–No words are found in these pages, and none are necessary in this visual ode to spring from Portugal. Readers follow a girl with tan or reddish pink skin, a black bob, red dress, and white leggings in a varying number of comic book–style panels per page featuring a palette of primarily green, blue, red, brown, white, and yellow. Each element in the very spare illustrations is purposeful and moves the story forward. A bored little girl is delighted by the forecast of sunny weat her and rushes to go outside, only stopping to put on her shoes when her caregiver blocks her way. Slowly, the door opens and the starstruck girl enters a world of green grass, tall trees, and white clouds. Then the spring breeze takes her up and away. She soars over the miniature land below, alighting in front of a vast and welcoming woodland. Like Alice in Wonderland, she travels the path through it, delighting in the wildlife and pausing to dance to the music of a cricket. A book that is perfect in its simplicity and scope, this allows young children to pore over the pages and older ones to venture into a graphic-novel format in a refreshing, accessible way.
VERDICT All the delights of spring are found within the covers in this charming, wordless picture book. Recommended for all libraries.

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