Grahame Conveys Disquieting News
The Woods of Wicomico
"Home is worth defending and dying for, for many. The Woods of Wicomico tells the story of the animals of the Wicomico woods and their serene lives as they are threatened by human development. As they work together to oppose this development, they learn the power of teamwork, and no matter how small and powerless one is, they can become something greater. "The Woods of Wicomico" is a charming read, highly recommended."
--Midwest Book Review
"Children will be captivated when they meet Timothy the tortoise, Octavious the osprey, Grahame the groundhog and their friends of various species, all dwelling in The Woods of Wicomico. Nuala Galbari has written, and Buttons Boggs has illustrated, a narrative thatís up to the minute in its environmental message, but timeless in its ability to bring animals to vital life as distinct individuals. Best of all, through its sparkling vocabulary and its original songs and lyrics, this book invites an engaged and creative response on the part of its young readers."
--Barbara J. King, Ph.D., author of Being with Animals
"Animal lore guarantees a flight-path into any childís heart and imagination and Nuala Galbari and Buttons Boggs have, through the artful interweaving of narrative, song and illustration, provided a fanciful passage connecting sky, sea and land in an entertaining force of nature. No child should be denied the opportunity of meeting the wondrously allegorical community of Wicomico, and as the reader is swept along on a mission to save the Woods of Wicomico, we discover the environs of the York River and Chesapeake Bay playing an equally central role in the drama. Ms. Galbari proves a consummate fablist delivering a story rich in simple metaphor, positioning markers of moral direction at comprehensive levels for even the youngest of readers. The Woods of Wicomico is reason enough to celebrate as the spirit of Potter, Aesop and Orwell live on in Ms. Galbari and her meaningful menagerie!"
--Phillip M. Church, Head of Performance Theatre & Dance, Architecture and the Arts, Florida International University, Miami, FL"The Woods of Wicomico takes us soaring over treetops and sailing ships with concerned crows, garrulous gulls, and outraged ospreys, perching on tree limbs with opossums and owls, and scurrying through the forest undergrowth with disgruntled groundhogs, turtles, deer and a host of animals all fearing they are about to lose their homes to the developers of human habitats. Nuala Galbari's story is a page-turner for young and old, and Buttons Boggs' endearing illustrations make us want to linger to enjoy the lush forest and cute creatures. Ms. Galbari gives us many pleasures: a compelling story to read to the little ones (perhaps a chapter at a time to keep them looking forward to sixteen bedtimes), a vocabulary list to enrich the learning experience of new learners and advanced students alike, and an ecological morality drama to raise our awareness of the consequences of what we call "progress". A surprizing inclusion in this book of many delights are Ms. Galbari's tunes. She gives us words AND music, some with harmonic notations and one with a lovely keyboard accompaniment. Sing these a few times with your family and you'll have the tunes running through your head for days. Not the least attraction of this splendid book are Ms. Boggs' illustrations, which give us a lesson in harmony in art, showing us how line and color may be combined in inventive ways to be a perfect complement to the narrative. I found one misspelling ("All right" really is TWO words, Children), but this is a small bump on a delightful ride." >--Joseph Dellinger,Company Actor and Program Editor, Virginia Shakespeare Festival, Williamsburg, VA
"Nuala Galbariís The Woods of Wicomico is a winner out of the gate. It expresses her powerful concern for the Chesapeake Bay environs, and is alive with endearing and expertly animated wildlife characters. The ballad, Victus Astrum ("Shining Star") can easily bring a tear of concern and the awareness for action to the heart and mind of anyone reading this excellent book. Children will love it."
--Jim Welch, Chief Executive Officer, IPAC Marine Environmental Research Corporation, Norfolk, Virginia
"It is getting increasingly difficult to find great modern literature for children. That's why this book is so refreshing. It is well written and beautifully illustrated. It is intelligent and perceptive in its approach to developing environmental consciousness in children. Children will experience the damage done by development. What we often see as "development" is short sighted business decisions that frequently cause far reaching environmental and social damage. This books goes a long way toward helping our children develop an environmental awareness that will change the destructive path on which we now find ourselves. We need more books like this one."
--Charles Croft, SEA-TV Productions, Los Angeles, CA
"The Woods of Wicomico is a delightful children's book which can be enjoyed by adults as well. Here, the animal characters work diligently to protect and preserve their land. Children can enrich their vocabulary by reading this book. They also learn the lore of the Chesapeake Bay area around the York River and beyond, while following an interestingly woven story of determination by the woodland animals. A story not easily forgotten, beautifully illustrated and full of meaning. It is the kind of book to cherish and hand down to future generations."
--Marcy Benouameur, Mathews Maritime Foundation
"As a parent and grandparent reading The Woods of Wicomico to a young child, one soon begins to relive ones own childhood. The cast of animal characters becomes real as they plan on recovering their woodland home, causing one to ponder the fate of our own wild woodlands today - indeed the very fate of our planet, as we face increasing pollution and overpopulation of the human species.† The Woods of Wicomico is a book not only for tomorrow's generation of occupants - our children and grandchildren - but also for us as adults.† What are we to learn from the voices of Wicomico's animals?† Such abstract concepts as time, duty and responsibility, as taught by old Cornelius the crow to Timothy Trumble the tortoise, apply to all of us today.† Only we can make this, our Earth, a better place."
--David L. Justis, M.D., Ph.D., Riverside Health Systems, Virginia
"The author has woven together a story combining wit, charm and imagination with the rich natural abundance of Virginia's Bay and woodlands.† She imbues a deep sense of place to this small patch of woods, rooted in nature and history, and crafts a compelling and timely message about protecting these special places before they are lost.† Though intended as a children's story, it embraces themes of connections with nature and our past that we should all appreciate, and does so with elegant prose and lavish illustrations that everyone can enjoy."
--Thane Harpole, Co-Director of Fairfield Foundation, Virginia