cover image One Day in the Prairie

One Day in the Prairie

Jean Craighead George, J. George. Crowell, $12.95 (42pp) ISBN 978-0-690-04564-2

At dawn, the electricity in the air warns buffalo of an impending storm. An eagle flies overhead; a prairie dog back flips to warn other prairie dogs about the eagle. Henry, camera in hand, wants to photograph the wildlife. Before the day is out, he will have survived a tornado that has killed animals and plants. That is life on the prairie, as related by Newbery Medalist George. Her lucid explanations of the ways the animals read signals and prepare for a storm are a primer in natural science; she chooses information with care, and maintains a simple storyline. Marstall's pictures add drama to a book that's perhaps not as immediately interesting as George's One Day in the Alpine Tundra and One Day in the Desert, perhaps because prairies are more familiar landscapes. Yet readers will newly understand the fragility and interrelationship of life forms. (9-12)