cover image Have You Ever Seen a Flower?

Have You Ever Seen a Flower?

Shawn Harris. Chronicle, $17.99 (48p) ISBN 978-1-4521-8270-4

Leaving a huddle of pencil-gray skyscrapers in its wake, a car holding a city’s single colorful denizen heads for wide-open country and into hills covered with wildflowers. A child with long, multihued hair, a white terrier at their heels, runs into a variegated meadow awash in hues. “Have you ever seen a flower?” a voice asks, then presses further: “I mean really...// seen a flower?” The child buries their face amid the field’s blooms. “Have you ever seen a flower using nothing but your nose?” The persistent questioning is matched by the visual intensity of the spreads, colored-pencil drawings bursting with energy, angular shapes in rainbow hues that are bounded by crisp-edged negative space. Attention is paid first to the senses as ways of knowing nature deeply, and then to the idea of aliveness itself. “Life is inside you,” the voice says. “Now sip a drip of water...” it instructs, “Feel it slip and trickle all the way down to your roots. Do you feel yourself growing?” With assurance and passion in his solo debut, Harris (A Polar Bear in the Snow) connects readers to the stirrings of life in all its forms. Ages 3–5. [em]Agent: Steven Malk, Writers House. (May) [/em]