From Publishers Weekly
Like Plourde (Snow Day, reviewed above) and Couch's two previous collaborations (Wild Child and Winter Waits), this lushly illustrated book heralds a change in the seasons, but also demonstrates the universal experience of sibling rivalry. When Mother Earth wakens her daughters, March, April and May, they all vie for their mother's attention each asking if they dressed the fastest. Mother Earth replies judiciously, "You are the fastest March I ever did see./ And the fastest April I ever did see./ And the fastest May I ever did see." Similarly, when each girl sings a spring song, Mother Earth shushes their bickering by telling them, "The truth / I love you ALL the best." The girls delight in their mother's politic answer as they wake up the world and shout for summer to come. Each of their songs reflects the characteristics of that month (March, for instance "howls and growls/ like a monsoon,/ then whiffs and puffs/ a quieter tune"). Couch fills his evocative acrylic-and-pencil illustrations with a haze of lavender shadows, infused with soft yellow sunlight and spring green. In one particularly exquisite painting, Mother Earth takes the form of a graceful tree wearing pink blossoms in her hair, reaching out her branch-like fingers to awaken the sleeping children. Ages 4-8.
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
From School Library Journal
reSchool-Grade 1--"Spring's Sprung! A new day's begun." As with Wild Child (1999) and Winter Waits (2001, both S & S), Plourde and Couch evoke a whimsical impression of the season. Using washes of liquid acrylic paint with details done in colored pencils, the illustrations glow with an ethereal light that beautifully matches the mood of the text. In this story, Mother Earth rouses her daughters, March, April, and May, so they can awaken the world and welcome the season. However, "The sisters squabble like siblings do. `Mother loves me more than she loves you.'" Each wants to be favorite, to be the fastest, to sing the best. Thankfully, their parent is gentle and wise. "A mother's heart is big enough to grow and grow, and stretch and stretch. The truth-I love you ALL the best." After the playful months wake the world with their song, the book ends with a hint of what is to come: "-time to wake one more girl. So, March, April, and May simply say, `Summer, oh, Summer, come out and play.'" Although the rhyming text is occasionally forced, the concept is laudable, and readers who have enjoyed the previous titles will want to check out this one as well.
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Piper L. Nyman, Fairfield/Suisun Community Library, Fairfield, CA
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.