Rivertime is the latest book in my quest to read as many of the CBCA 2015 Shortlist as I can before the winners announcement next week. As usual my reading eyes are bigger than my reading stomach. Rivertime made two shortlists - Picture Book of the Year and the Crichton Award for New Illustrators. It has already won the Readings Prize 2015 and the Environment Award for Children's Literature Picture Fiction. And David Suzuki noless wrote the blurb for the cover.
Rivertime is a first book for author illustrator Trace Balla. It is a gentle, beguiling story inspired by Trace's own 2012 kayaking trip on the Glenelg River in Western Victoria. In Rivertime 10 year old city boy Clancy is taken on a kayaking trip by his uncle. Clancy is not overwhelmed at the prospect of going without all his modern playthings- there will be no computer, no music, no games on the river.
Soon Clancy is enjoying spending time in the great outdoors. Seeing our amazing birds and animals and living life at a slower pace. Written in a pictorial diary format we travel the river with Clancy and Uncle Egg. It's quirky from the very start.
Rivertime is a gentle meandering of a story about taking time to notice the beauty of the world around us.
Kids love it. You will too.