Lyrical prose and luminous paintings lead readers on a tour of the Yellowstone supervolcano, from the wolves, elk, bears, and mountain goats that roam its surface to the fiery depths of its magma chamber. VOLCANO DREAMS knits together the vibrancy of the Yellowstone ecosystem with its explosive history, placing the everyday lives of its creatures within the context of geological time. Janet Fox’s poetic text takes us to the root of it all – the “sleeping giant” of magma responsible for the Yellowstone landscape – and Marlo Garnsworthy’s evocative paintings capture the awe of natural forces at work in our nation’s oldest national park.
“Under a Yellowstone landscape populated by interesting animals lies a sleeping giant, a great volcano. This book makes a clever connection between the geology and the wildlife of America’s first national park. A gentle text and scenic illustrations depict various animals’ activities throughout the day. Then, attention turns to what’s happening underground, the processes that result in the bubbling mud pots, hissing steam vents, and roaring geysers. Fox describes a time when the volcano erupted, noting the lasting effects in the rocks and plant cover, and, finally, the narrative returns to the animals, now ready for sleep. The text and translucent frames for the animal scenes are set directly on double-page illustrations done with pencil, watercolor collage, and digital oil paints. These realistic images show the large animals described in the text—wolf, moose, bear, elk, bighorn sheep, mountain goat, mountain lion, coyote—and smaller ones that can be found by the curious child and easily identified by a knowledgeable adult reader. A helpful map on the title page shows the outlines of the caldera within the park; the backmatter includes a glossary of volcano-related words and more about this long-dormant “supervolcano.” The author’s first picture book reflects her own appreciation for this national treasure, which could inspire family visits. An unusual and appealing addition to the sense-of-wonder shelf.”—Kirkus Reviews
“Something big is sleeping in Yellowstone, but it isn’t any of the animals. The wolf is watching out for her pups, the moose is scooping up pondweed, the bear is eating chokecherries, the rams are playing, the buffalo are grazing, the coyote howls, and even the earth is awake. Mud pots are bubbling, steam vents are hissing, and geysers are roaring. Way down deep in the ground where the rocks are soft and hot, a sleeping giant waits to wake again someday. Long ago the volcano erupted and formed the great yellow cliffs, columnar joints, liquid rock froze to black obsidian glass and left the land to be carved into deep canyons by streams and rivers, and lush meadows grew. It may be a very long time before the volcano erupts again, but for now the animals, nature, and humans enjoy the beauty of Yellowstone. A beautifully told story of Yellowstone.”—KidsBookshelf
“This lyrical, lusciously illustrated title offers an introduction to the flora and fauna of Yellowstone Park to young readers. A brief history of the formation of the world-renowned land feature is simply, yet dramatically told. A valuable addition to an Earth science collection.”—School Library Connection
“Entertaining, informative, and thoroughly ‘kid friendly’ from first page to last, “Volcano Dreams: A Story of Yellowstone” is unreservedly recommended for family, school, and community library collections.”—Midwest Book Review