Tuesday, January 19, 2016

How the Sun Got to Coco's House

How the Sun Got to Coco's House
written and illustrated by Bob Graham
2015 (Candlewick Press)
Source: Orange County Public Library

It had to start somewhere. While Coco slept far away, the sun crept up slowly behind a hill, paused for a moment, and seemed to think twice...

On its way to Coco's house, the sun crosses the Arctic and makes shadows in the snow for young Jung Su. Soaring over a yurt in perhaps Mongolia, a child in a plane gazes out the window to view it. The sun continues to press on, crossing a city in Asia and waking animals in the countryside. It moves over the desert and pushes the night out of many countries. After taking a look at itself in some city towers, the sun breaks into Coco's house through her window. It joins her family for breakfast and spends the rest of the day with Coco.

Bob Graham gets it. He knows that children find wonder in what adults consider mundane. We're dulled to the joy of the sun rising, too besotted with the day that lies ahead. The last time I seriously considered a sunrise, I was blinded through my hotel window at 4:30 in the morning in Copenhagen. Read this book to a group of kids and they will recall different times in their lives where the sun made an impression on them. This would be a terrific text for a lesson on the earth's rotation. It's also an excellent lesson for wanna-be writers like myself who seek to capture what children find interesting. Bob Graham is a role model for such aspiring authors. Check out How to Heal a Broken Wing and Vanilla Ice Cream to learn more.

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