A Rock Can Be...

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Product Details

$17.99  $16.73
Millbrook Press (Tm)
Publish Date
10.33 X 9.87 X 0.28 inches | 0.88 pounds

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About the Author

Laura Purdie Salas is an award-winning author of more than 125 books for children, including her recent books Snowman - Cold = Puddle: Spring Equations, illustrated by Micha Archer, and Lion of the Sky: Haiku for All Seasons, illustrated by Mercè López. Her books have received such honors as Bank Street College of Education's Best Books for Children, IRA Teachers' Choice, the Minnesota Book Award, and NCTE Notable book. Laura went to kindergarten in Florida and now lives in Minnesota. She hates crowds and knows a good friend makes everything better. Learn more about the author at www.laurasalas.com.

Hiroe Nakata grew up in Japan and moved to the United States when she was sixteen. She is a graduate of the Parsons School of Design. Artwork from her first picture book, Lucky Pennies and Hot Chocolate, was chosen for the prestigious Society of Illustrators Annual Exhibition. Since then, she has illustrated numerous books for children, including her recent titles, Baby's Blessings, written by Lesléa Newman, and One More Hug, written by Inside Edition's national correspondent Megan Alexander. Hiroe vividly remembers her daughter's struggles in kindergarten and is happy to report that, at fourteen, her daughter excels in school and plays in the school band.

Violeta Dabija lives in Moldova, a small Eastern European country. She has a strong traditional art background, a BA degree in Fine Arts/Graphic Design and 10 years of experience as a children's book illustrator. She works in both traditional and digital media and often mixes them to produce delicate and atmospheric illustrations with a traditional feel. She has illustrated about 25 children's books and she enjoys creating magic pictures and unique environments for her characters.


"As they did in A Leaf Can Be...(2012) and Water Can Be... (2014), Salas and Dabija have teamed up for this third imaginative creation. Simple rhymes and verses relate various aspects of a rock, explaining how it can be used as 'a hopscotch marker' or as a 'fire sparker.' Listeners meanwhile absorb delicious synonyms and adjectives for a rock that they may have originally thought of as an ordinary object. To help augment their imaginations and knowledge, there are appended pages where children can find a glossary, as well as learn additional facts, such as how rocks can be used to create harbors or how chickens swallow pebbles to help digest their food. Dabija uses traditional as well as digital techniques to illustrate with a bright, colorful palette that is appealing to children. Purchase for your rock hounds or where the earlier books in this series are popular." --School Library Journal


"What can a rock be? 'Tall mountain / Park fountain / Dinosaur bone / Stepping-stone.' The ideas expressed in this picture book's pithy text are varied and wide-ranging. Each two-word phrase appears on its own page, accompanied by a luminous illustration. While some concepts will be obvious to children from the words alone, and others are made clear by the pictures, a few ('Fire sparker, ' 'Crusty dome, ' 'Food grinder') may need further explanation. The sometimes cryptic phrases create a natural guessing game, and an appended section offers a paragraph of text explaining each one. Moldovan illustrator Dabija contributes a series of dynamic full-page and double-page images created with traditional and digital media. Her compositions, color combinations, and use of light are particularly fine. Similar in concept to Salas and Dabija's previous picture books, A Leaf Can Be . . . (2012) and Water Can Be . . . (2014), this beautiful picture book makes an excellent classroom read-aloud, challenging children to puzzle out the ideas in the poetic phrases and to broaden their thinking about rocks." --Booklist


"'A rock is a rock, ' but it can be so much more. A series of short rhyming couplets and digitally collaged illustrations celebrates the idea of rocks. Following the pattern of earlier titles on leaves and water, Salas and Dabija explore the many natural forms in which rock can be found--from the crust of the Earth to the moon's surface, from sand dunes and molten lava to cliffs filled with birds and fossilized bones--and demonstrate many of its uses. There's the play of skipping stones, the art of gargoyles, the utility of a bridge or breakwater, and the practicality of sparking fires and propping up books in a case. The author's two-word images ('Food grinder / Path winder') are each set on a single page and clearly illustrated in spreads that connect ideas that are sometimes quite disparate through color echoes and occasional repeated details. There is a hint of seasonal organization, and the book ends with the harvest and wintry snow. The backmatter provides further explanation for these 22 images, including, for example, instructions for hopscotch and the origin of diamonds. The economy of language and breadth of imagination suggests a broad audience for this wide-ranging and inventive exploration." --Kirkus Reviews