Thursday, August 16, 2007
The Salamander Room
The Salamander Room by Anne Mazer and illustrated by Steve Johnson and Lou Fancher, 1991, Dragonfly Books published by Alfred A. Knopf, Inc., 12 pages.
The Salamander Room is a beautifully illustrated picture book that is sure to captivate the nature-loving child. Brian finds a salamander and asks his mother to keep him as a pet. Rather than saying "no" his mother asks leading questions as to where the salamander will sleep, what he will eat, where he will play and if he'll be lonely.
Eager to keep his new pet, but also desiring to give him a happy home, Brian reassures his mother that he will bring moss into his room, wet leaves, boulders and insects to make the salamander happy.
Brian's mother continues to question, and Brian continues to imagine bringing the out of doors--in. He says he will bring trees into his room and birds... and by the end, Brian has lifted the roof off his room in order to let in the sun and rain. In fact, so much of the salamander's home has found its way into Brian's room that the only thing recognizable about Brian's room is Brian's bed where he hopes to sleep under the stars beside his new pet salamander.
A charming story with poetic dialogue and stunning illustrations. I am considering buying an extra copy of this book to frame some of these pictures. Thanks Melanie B. for telling me about this book in the comments section of my post, Baking With Amphibians, where the boys had hoped to keep a frog in our house.