Up the Mountain Path

illus. by Marianne Dubuc. 72p. Princeton Architectural. Oct. 2018. Tr $17.95. ISBN 9781616897239.
RedReviewStarPreS-Gr 2—Mrs. Badger, a badger of advanced years, climbs to a mountain peak every Sunday. On her walk, she greets her forest friends, giving gifts, and offering a helping hand. One day she meets a cat named, Lulu. She invites Lulu to walk to the mountain peak with her. Lulu isn't sure she can make the climb. After they craft the perfect walking stick, they begin to walk together. Lulu asks a lot of questions, and Mrs. Badger teaches her to quietly listen and observe the world around her. From then on, Mrs. Badger and Lulu climb the mountain together. As time passes, it is Lulu who needs to lend Mrs. Badger a steadying hand over the steep spots. Eventually, Lulu must climb to the peak without Mrs. Badger. Softly rendered pencil, colored pencil, and watercolor illustrations of forest scenes capture the grandness of nature, from a tiny hedgehog family to sweeping mountain vistas. Vignettes of the rosy-cheeked Mrs. Badger and her friends in conversation break up the forest illustrations and add interest. The text is in a small font, unassuming and, full of gentle wisdom from Mrs. Badger.
VERDICT Mindfulness can be a difficult concept to understand, and this book is thoughtfully crafted to show quiet contemplation and serenity in action. A perfect choice for budding naturalists as well.

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