Keri Recommends

Thoughts on Poetry, Books, and Life

If You Were the Moon by Laura Purdie Salas

Cover image from www.laurasalas.com.

I have a confession to make: I really, really struggle with science. I’m the student who needed to have a visual model for everything so I could understand what was happening. You start getting into math that uses letters and processes that can’t actually be seen and I’m cross-eyed with confusion. (Hmmmm, maybe that’s why I’m a writer.)

So I was really excited to see an invitation from Laura Purdie Salas to check out her new book, due out in February, If You Were the Moon. Jaime Kim’s illustrations are glorious.

In a playful tone, the moon explains its many activities — from dodging space rocks to reflecting light. Word play, clever metaphors, and simple similes give young children concrete, visual images for such abstract concepts as gravity and the movement of ocean tides.

Interior spread courtesy of Lerner Publishing Group.

The poet in me would be perfectly satisfied with the moon’s dialogue with our young heroine who oh-so-mistakenly accuses the moon of doing “exactly nothing,” but the learner in me loved the moon facts on each spread.

Multicultural elements add a bit of social studies to this scientific picture book, such as the inclusion of traditions from the Ivory Coast and China. (Extra props for including one of my favorite songs, “Claire de Lune” too, Laura!)

On the whole, a sweet bedtime read aloud for younger children who are ready to hear the moon tell its story, with some added facts for older kids (or adults who are scientifically challenged, like me!) and for use in classrooms and libraries.

Violet Nesdoly is hosting this week’s poetry party! My thanks to everyone who participated last week and made hosting so much FUN!

9 thoughts on “If You Were the Moon by Laura Purdie Salas”

  1. Brenda says:

    A very enticing review, Keri. Looks like a great book.

  2. Thanks, Keri, for sharing this. And I feel exactly the same way about biography and a lot of history topics. Picture books are my favorite way to learn about many things, even as an adult:>) So glad you enjoyed the book! And thank you again for my postcard poem and my wee talisman. I feel in need of a talisman today. xoxo

  3. Linda LOOK! says:

    Fabulous! I’m that way with numbers too. I wish I wasn’t but I am. I reviewed this book too! Love it like you do.

  4. Keri, your review of Laura’s book makes science come alive with a poetic touch. Thanks for sharing your perspective. I really want to read Laura’s new book now.

  5. I got my copy the other day and read it aloud to my students today. While I want to create my own blog post about it, I think I’ll pingback to this one. Next time I read it aloud, I am going to use Clair de Lune as the background music.

  6. Kay McGriff says:

    I wish I had had this book when I took an astronomy course via correspondence class. (That was a long time ago.) It not only would have helped me with understanding the phases of the moon, but it sounds beautiful, too.

  7. Linda Baie says:

    What a lovely review, Keri. I have a copy too, and just read it to my granddaughters. They loved it too, and now know a bit about the various ways one can “look” at the moon, including music.

  8. Violet N. says:

    Thanks for this review! Laura’s book sounds so imaginative and fun. I’ve added itto my list of books to find and read.

  9. Mary Lee Hahn says:

    Can’t wait to see this book!!

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