If you do not know the artwork of Micha Archer, you are in for a treat. Using oil paint and collage that she makes with homemade stamps and tissue paper, she creates a luxuriant world that you can't help but enter with your imagination. A mother and teacher who understands the value of picture books, Archer writes with a poetic charm that's as irresistible as her artwork.

You don't even need to flip beyond the title page to experience this book's wonder. Two children, both in comfy stocking feet, lie on a long couch in sumptuous shades of green. The girl is up on her elbows, reading a book; the boy is on his back, cuddling a kitty, his head craned upside down so that he can look out the window.

And then, with a simple exchange of:

"Wonder walk?"


... the two are on their way. They ask questions like, "Is the sun the world's light bulb?" and "Are forests the mountain's fur?" Sometimes we see them scampering across landscapes with long-distant views into the hills and sky. Other times their faces lie close to the ground, gazing at flowers, ferns, and grasses all marvelously layered with Archer's collage textures.

The text (reading level 3 - 7 years) has a simplicity to it which will appeal even to very young children, yet it has a depth which will keep readers returning to the book again and again. That's because it ignites children's own sense of wonder and curiosity about things.

The other reason for the book's ongoing appeal is that, like all great artwork, these pictures invite themselves into our hearts. Who couldn't feel uplift upon seeing the girl reach her arms up to the trunk of a tree that stretches so far above her that we cannot even see its branches, while the boy sits with his back to the next tree over, as if listening to the murmur of its rising sap? To get so fully drawn into natural wonder borders on bliss, an experience that children richly deserve.