cover image Sweep Up the Sun

Sweep Up the Sun

Helen Frost, photos by Rick Lieder. Candlewick, $15.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-7636-6904-1

Frost and Lieder follow Step Gently Out with another winning combination of sensitive verse and striking photography, this time taking an inspirational approach that makes the book equally well-suited for graduation gift-giving and moments of everyday encouragement. “Spread your feathers,/ sweep up the sun,/ ride the wind and explore,” writes Frost as a cardinal is shown in midflight, its wings remarkably translucent against a wintry background. Detailed information about the 11 pictured birds adds heft and context to a book that will have readers marveling at these easily overlooked finches, jays, and sparrows while taking heart in its message of one’s ability to thrive and even soar in a big, wide world. Ages 2–5. (Mar.)