FICTION

Possum and the Summer Storm

illus. by Anne Hunter. 32p. HMH. May 2018. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780544898912.
COPY ISBN
PreS-Gr 1—When a storm washes away Possum's family home, animal friends pitch in to help them build a new one. The first attempt at a new house by Chipmunk proves to be too small, but works as a basement. Next Muskrat shows them how to build a lodge. Oriole even teaches them how to make a nest for a bed. When another storm comes, the friends seek shelter in the home they helped create. Rich vocabulary can be found throughout the text. For example, when Wasp offers assistance she says, "I can make a comb of chewed wood and saliva. It might make nice windows." Illustrations are sweet and comforting. On the opening page when a dark storm cloud hovers, one of the baby possums has an acorn cap for a hat. Text and illustrations work well in conveying the opening mood. "Thunder crashed. Wind howled. The possum family watched as the creek rose." Illustrations mostly in blues and greens show the movement of the water and rustling of plants on the bank as the possum family looks on. The animals look serious, but the book is not scary.
VERDICT A charming story about resilience, friendship, and animal architecture. This will work well in a group setting or as a single share.

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