All Around Us (Xelena González)

Hello, friends! Our book today is All Around Us, written by Xelena González and illustrated by Adriana M. Garcia, a sweet tale of the nature of life and the bond between a little girl and her grandfather.

Circles are all around us, a man tells his granddaughter. They exist everywhere, even in places we may not see them. He points out a rainbow, and explains that the arch of the rainbow is just the part that we can see. But underneath the earth, where all things are born and go back to when they leave, the rainbow continues, forming a circle. Many things are circles – bicycle wheels, the sun, a clock – and there are many circles that we follow in our actions, such as planting the seeds of vegetables harvested from the ground. Indeed, one day we all will return to the earth, and the circle will begin again with new life. Circles are all around, says the grandfather. We simply need to know where to look.

What a lovely book. First and foremost, the art is stunning – vibrant painted and sketched circles set against realistic backgrounds make each page vibrate with energy, and elicit the theme of interconnectivity perfectly. The story is slow, but worth it; this is a quiet tale of a bond between granddaughter and grandfather, and a meditation on life and death, and both are handled with a soft touch. This might make it more of tale for slightly older bookworms, though I will say that the length was fine for JJ, and she absolutely loved the art. This one glows from within, not relying on flash but instead a warm, sunny feeling of peace. Baby Bookworm approved.

(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)

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