cover image Home Sweet Home

Home Sweet Home

Jean Marzollo. HarperCollins, $14.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-06-027562-4

Marzollo (I Spy series; Sun Song) and Wolff (Goody O'Grumpity) celebrate the natural world and the myriad wild creatures who live in its splendor in this verdant picture book. A simple rhyming verse set in large, bold type rolls elegantly across the pages, asking blessings for the multitude of plants and animals depicted in the luxuriant paintings (""Bless each hare/ Each fish, each bear""; ""Bless each ant/ Each cactus plant""). Marzollo's universal image of the earth as one big home to all that's living is a timely one in these days of growing eco-awareness, and the gentle mellifluous words are perfect for bedtime reading. The deep, earthy palette and up-close perspectives of Wolff's artwork impart a true sense of the great outdoors; at the same time, the strongly delineated compositions, almost like woodcuts in their bold definitions, add heightened clarity. Realistic renderings of flora and fauna accurately place Wolff's scenes in such distinct geographical regions as desert, river, marsh and African savanna. This book will help many suburban kids see their own surroundings in a new light, while city slickers will be left longing for a trip to the country. Ages 4-8. (Mar.)