cover image Finding Fire

Finding Fire

Logan S. Kline. Candlewick, $18.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-5362-1302-7

Wordless save for a five-line intro, this picture book stars a prehistoric child, portrayed with pale skin and red hair, who sets out to find a new source of fire after a torrential rain douses a local cave hearth. Initially youthful confidence and competence personified, the kid trudges with a trusty spear through a windswept, predator-populated landscape. But a sudden tumble results in a hurt foot, and the protagonist realizes they’re utterly alone—until they selflessly rescue a scrawny woolly mammoth calf, and gain both a companion and a trusty steed. Rendered in soft blue and brown tones that offer a visual counterpoint to the naturalistically craggy setting, debut creator Kline’s mixed-media art exudes the sense of a fledgling world. Comics-style panels pull the reader into close connection with the determined protagonist, while bravura cinematic spreads celebrate ingenuity, kindness, and bravery against the elements and great odds. Readers will pore over these vividly imagined pages en route to its cozy, brightly lit end. Ages 4–8. Agency: Herman Agency. (Sept.)