cover image Seeking an Aurora

Seeking an Aurora

Elizabeth Pulford, illus. by Anne Bannock. Blue Dot Kids, $17.95 (32p) ISBN 978-1-73312-127-9

In this lyrically written tale from author Pulford, a tan-skinned child’s father wakes them in the middle of the night: “Come on,” he says. “We’re off to find an Aurora.” Pastel drawings on colored paper by Bannock glow with the red of the father’s coat and the warm yellow-orange of the child’s jacket. The two tiptoe through the door and walk to the top of the hill. The child, not sure what awaits them, looks back at the house with its “warm, buttery light” and the footprints they leave in the frost. The father offers reassurance (“ ‘Is it scary?’ Dad shook his head”) but no further clarity until they cuddle up and watch: “wide wings of light flew over the sky.” Bannock pulls back to show the duo as small black silhouettes against the magnificent colors of the aurora, “dancing light, glowing... and glimmering, shimmering and shining.” The child’s experience of seeing the spectacle with no preparation or preconceptions adds drama to Pulford’s story, which stays tightly focused on the family’s quiet outdoor adventure, and on the aurora itself. An endnote provides facts. Ages 3–7. (Jan.)