cover image Let the Lynx Come in

Let the Lynx Come in

Jonathan London, Patrick Benson. Candlewick Press (MA), $15.99 (32pp) ISBN 978-1-56402-531-9

Like many of London's (The Owl Who Became the Moon) previous books, Let the Lynx Come In lends a distinctive poetry to natural themes; but here, as in his best books, his language approaches the resonant power of myth. In a cabin in the north woods, a father sleeps by the pot-bellied stove while his wide-awake son imagines what lies outside in the vast darkness. At the sound of scratching, the boy opens the door and beholds a lynx, which steps inside. While ""firelight glows in its yellow eyes,"" the wildcat grows ""till his whiskers touch the walls!"" He commands the youngster to climb up for a ride. Continuing to grow, the Great Lynx takes the child past the tips of pine trees to ""claw up and up the curtains"" of the rippling northern lights, all the way to the moon. London's poetic prowess and ability to capture awe renew the familiar theme of riding into the wild night on an animal's back. The fine texture and modulated light of Benson's (Owl Babies) watercolor and ink illustrations gentle the story, bathing the recklessness of the narrator's adventure in the benign qualities of a satisfying dream. Ages 5-8. (Sept.)