Author Kate Moss Gamblin • Illustrator Karen Patkau
Groundwood Books 2020
The poetic text and beautifully rendered illustrations show a child and grownup sharing experiences such as swimming alongside lake trout, paddling a canoe and star gazing, encouraging a caring connection to the natural world and the shaping of a sustainability perspective.
• Questions with a whimsical, poetic air lead young readers and listeners through the experience of observing and appreciating the wonders of a woodland lake in this second book of the See To Learn series (after Forest, 2019.) … Layered, crisp-edged art framed by branches, swirling plants, and leaves reflects the text closely. … calls attention to the importance of the natural world, provides visual and sensory description, pinpoints relevant and unexpected details, encourages children to ask and answer questions, and seeks to elicit a sense of awe. – Kirkus Review
• Moss asks young readers to look at the lake in this addition to the “See to Learn” series to see if they can find all the little details she describes throughout the seasons. …The illustrations will make readers long to go outside and explore. For those readers presently self-isolating inside, the picture book reminds us to be grateful for the nature that surrounds us, and all the wildlife a lake helps support. – Highly Recommended – Canadian Materials
• This nonfiction picture book highlights the beauty of the natural world. The text encourages young readers to practice their observation skills by asking them questions about what they see in the illustrations. The questions are designed to be applied to the real world as children learn to look more closely at the world around them. Patkau’s gorgeous illustrations provide bright colors and shapes that will surely appeal to the target demographic. The questions highlight animals and natural features shown in the illustrations, giving children something specific to identify and point out to their reading companions. Each spread focuses on one animal or characteristic of the lake. The narrative begins in summer; each season is covered. VERDICT A pleasant reminder of the lovely features to be found around a wild lake. An enjoyable, interactive one-on-one read – School Library Journal
• … this See to Learn book prompts a series of observations by first asking, “What do you see when you see a lake?” From here, children follow the pair through vibrant scenes depicting different vantage points, seasons, and times of day around the lake, with guided questions directing the viewer’s gaze and encouraging curiosity. The questions are not simply pointed but rich in sensory and scientific information. For instance, as the father and child paddle a canoe at sunrise in the fall, the text asks, “Do you see the morning mist rising to clouds, as it does above lakes the world over, later returning to droplets or snow—snow that feathers all around us?” Other scenes reveal dragonflies and hummingbirds darting on a sunny day, fish protected under layers of ice in the winter, and the silhouettes of trees at twilight. Together, they encourage quiet reflection in a busy world. – Booklist
• Equally evocative is Kate Moss Gamblin’s “Lake,” illustrated by Karen Patkau (Groundwood, 32 pages, $16.95, ages 3-8). “Do you see …?” asks the narrator, observing a lake with its shifting seasons. Unfurling fiddleheads and baby moose, morning mist, otters and crimson leaves come into view like a moment in the wilderness. Patkau’s accurate portrayal of plant and wildlife is especially valuable in this time when awareness of nature is critical to all species’ health — including our own. – The Star