Hall, Michael. Wonderfall. Michael Hall, Illus. Picture Book. Greenwillow, 10/2016. pp. $17.99. 978-0-06-238298-6. OUTSTANDING. GRADES PRE-2.
Fifteen blended words: Peacefall, Dutifall, Plentifall, etc., are followed by a concise description of the events and changes observed by a colorful oak tree. Leaves change color, two playful squirrels buy acorns and build nests, people of different races have a parade, celebrate Halloween, and rake leaves. At the book’s end, the tree gives more information about gray squirrels, acorns, hibernation, migration, and dormancy. The digitally rendered illustrations are cousins to Lois Ehlert’s work, and the playful blended words are reminiscent of Douglas Florian’s work. Snowfall ends these observations on nature’s inexorable plunge into the dark months. This is a fun bright new way to look at autumn.
David Howd, Berkeley Public Library