cover image SHADOWS


April Pulley Sayre, , illus. by Harvey Stevenson. . Holt, $16.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-8050-6059-1

From the beach to the ballfield and back again, a boy and girl search for shadows on a sunny summer day in Sayre's (The Hungry Hummingbird) warm-hearted ode to friendship and the simple pleasures of the season: "Searching for shadows/ we run, hop!/ stare.../ at lots of shadows/ here/ and/ there." Stevenson's (As the Crow Flies) thickly applied acrylics, steeped in the glow of amber light, picture the friends—one dark-skinned, one light—as they push their bicycles aside and run toward the ocean. The rhythms emulate the narrator's observations, from the darting motions in nature ("Dragonfly shadows zip and pop./ Running horse shadows never stop") to the humor to be found at the ballfield ("A man keeps a shadow under his hat"), while the artwork zeroes in on the winged dragonfly and pulls back to create depth on the baseball diamond. In a roundly satisfying conclusion, the end of the day finds the friends at rest under a tree, making twin shadows with their toe-touching feet: "I think I like these shadows best." Ages 3-7. (Mar.)