Firsts and Lasts: The Changing Seasons (Hardcover)
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With evocative words and glorious cut-paper collages, this celebration of the transitions between seasons summons the first—and last—signals of the seasonal cycle.
What is the first sign of spring? And what is the last glimpse of winter? The joy of the changing seasons means saying hello to new but familiar rituals, like spring picnics in the park or homemade lemonade in summer. But there’s also the bittersweet feeling of doing something for the last time, like mowing the lawn one final time on a brown day in autumn, or watching the last of the geese fly south in the early weeks of winter. Whichever way you mark the changing of the seasons, every year feels like an extraordinary miracle! In this jubilant ode to seasonal rituals, Leda Schubert evokes the familiar, enchanting rhythm of the four seasons, while Clover Robin’s bold collages bring warmth and magic to everyday occurrences.
About the Author
Leda Schubert is the author of numerous books for children, including Dogs Love Cars, illustrated by Paul Meisel; the Brand New Reader series of Winnie books, illustrated by William Benedict; Monsieur Marceau, illustrated by Gerard Dubois, winner of the Orbis Pictus Award for Outstanding Nonfiction; and many others. Leda Schubert has an MFA in writing for children from Vermont College, served on the Caldecott committee, and lives in Vermont with her husband and their goldendoodles.
Clover Robin is a collage artist and the author and illustrator of several books for children, including Cut Paper Pictures, Bug Hotel, and Bird House. Originally from Devon, England, Clover Robin now lives in London.
Although seasons books abound, Schubert and Robin’s tacit emphasis on transitions makes this an especially thoughtful offering that will have readers chiming in with their own rosters of rituals that make the year go ‘round.
—The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (starred review)
A celebration of the harbingers and vestiges of seasonal change. . . . Robin’s cut-paper collages are charmingly old-fashioned yet still feel relevant and fun, and they use color palettes that shift with the seasons. . . . Seasonal rituals come alive in this by turns bittersweet and joyful ode to beginnings and endings.
Each season’s traits are captured through snapshots of firsts and lasts in this change-forward chronicle by Schubert and Robin. . . . Schubert’s indicative descriptions combine with Robin’s textured portraits for a nostalgic ode focusing on weather in the global north.
There is bliss with each turn of the page, as the pastel hues of spring give way to a summer riot of deeper colors; with fall, the pages turn orange and gold for a last trip to the ice cream stand. . . this will inspire children to make lists of their own, to note those “lasts” and look forward to more “firsts.” A lovely work.
—School Library Journal
This ode to change, filled with gorgeous cut-paper illustrations, captures the elusive magic of how one season becomes another, right before our eyes.
—The Virginian Pilot
Each sentiment and sentence presented by author Leda Schubert is accompanied by lavish illustrations from Clover Robin. The combination is a timeless and relevant book that can be read and re-read.
—The Florida Times-Union
This ode to nature by Leda Schubert and illustrations by Clover Robin shares the anticipation of a new season, while enjoying the beauty of the current.