It’s summertime, and as darkness falls there is a haunting sound from the lake — Ooh-hoo-oo, ooh-hoo-oo. It is a loon calling to its family across the water.
This lyrical story follows the life cycle of two loon chicks. We see them breaking out of their eggshells, then learning to swim, find food and avoid predators such as snapping turtles and big bass fish. After they learn to fly, they migrate to the ocean. And when their striking black-and-white feathers finally emerge, they fly inland, each to find a new lake territory and mate.
Accompanying Susan Vande Griek’s poetic text are Karen Reczuch’s gorgeous illustrations, which show the loons as they grow from tiny downy chicks to majestic adult birds. An afterword provides more information on loons, including their amazing diving ability, the meanings of their calls, and the environmental threats that they face. Also illustrated are five different types of loons and other animals that can be found in their lake habitat. The illustrations were researched in the Ornithology Collections at the Royal Ontario Museum, and Ron Ridout of Bird Studies Canada consulted on the text.
Susan Vande Griek is the author of a number of highly acclaimed children’s books. Her picture book Loon, illustrated by Karen Reczuch, was named a USBBY Outstanding International Book and won the Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children’s Book Award, the Norma Fleck Award for Canadian Children’s Non-Fiction and the Children’s Literature Roundtables of Canada Information Book Award. More recently, she has written Go Home Bay, illustrated by Pascal Milelli, a glimpse into the life of the artist Tom Thomson, and An Owl at Sea, illustrated by Ian Wallace. A longtime resident of the Maritimes, Susan now lives in Kingston, Ontario.
Karen Reczuch has illustrated many award-winning children’s books. Loon by Susan Vande Griek won the TD Norma Fleck Award for Canadian Children’s Non-fiction, the Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children’s Picture Book Award and the Vancouver Children’s Literature Roundtable Information Book Award. Karen’s other publications include West Coast Wild, winner of the VCLR Information Book Award; The Auction by Jan Andrews, a Governor General’s Award finalist; Just Like New by Ainslie Manson, winner of the Amelia Frances Howard-Gibbon Award; and Salmon Creek, winner of the BC Book Prize. Karen’s work includes scientific, historical and archeological illustration, and has been exhibited internationally.
Winner of the Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children’s Picture Book Award
Winner of the Norma Fleck Award for Canadian Children’s Non-Fiction
Winner of the Children's Literature Roundtable Information Book Award
A USBBY Outstanding International Books Honor Book
Longlisted for the Midwest Booksellers Choice Award
“Powerful . . . A bird book and an art book . . . It presents the mysterious, wild, natural world as a place to observe and wonder.” Toronto Star
“Poetic prose . . . [and] stunning double-page paintings.” Globe and Mail
“A lyrical text and lush, full-color illustrations . . . A warm and nurturing story of parent/chick bonding, this title will be great for storytimes as well as one-on-one sharing.” School Library Journal
“... a delightful celebration of nature ... Highly Recommended.” CM Magazine