When the Shadbush Blooms
Lee & Low revives this beautiful #OwnVoices look at the seasons, as experienced by the Lenni Lenape people, which was originally published in 2007 by Tricycle Press and had fallen out of print. A multigenerational tale unfolds through rich acrylic scenes painted on double-page spreads, upon which the left page shows a family’s great-great-grandparents engaged in activities with their children that mirror those unfolding during the present day on the right. An entire year is depicted, with time marked as the Lenape traditionally have observed it—through telling shifts in nature, such as the “Grass and Geese Moon” and the “Heartberry Moon,” and through activities the Lenape people associate with specific times of year, as with the “Planting Moon” and the “Moon of Roasting Ears of Corn.” The seamless integration of the past with the present gently but powerfully shows the enduring power of tradition and history, while also highlighting the cyclical aspect of nature. Informative back matter provides more detail on the Lenni Lenape people, seasons, and culture. A lovely, enriching offering.