Colorado Author Feature: Nicole Magistro

If you’ve been paying attention to my reviews of picture books, you’ll surely have noticed that when there is a rhyming scheme included, I’m pretty critical of that rhyme. As someone who reads books aloud fairly often, it is important to me that books are accessible, pleasing to the ear, and easy to follow especially when presented in rhyme. That’s why when I find one that checks all of my boxes, I’m thrilled to share it!

Read Island is a picture book that introduces readers to a young girl who travels across the vast ocean with two animal companions to a very special island made of books. There, animals come from far and wide to enjoy stories together, celebrating the many important elements of storytelling. And when it comes time to return home, it is known that the door is always open for visitors to find their way back again. Please see my full review here.

As I mentioned initially, this book is made up of rhyming couplets, two of which appear on each page. These brief blocks of text provide a framework to the story and give young children the freedom to spend time focusing on the whimsical illustrations. The balanced meter and consistent rhyme make the book both enjoyable and straightforward to read aloud, which is great for adults no matter whether they’re reading at home or in a public Storytime setting.

One of my favorite features of this book is the fact that pages from familiar children’s books are embedded into each image. It is a delight for readers to discover the hidden gems within the illustrations, especially when those inclusions trigger reminders of favorite literary memories. These appear in collage-style format, which gives the book a unique and special quality that is at once endearing and whimsical.

I am looking forward to enjoying this book for years to come both at home and out in the community. It’s been a while since I featured a Colorado-based author, and I’m thrilled to have discovered Nicole Magistro and to be able to share her work with you. Cheers to the power of books to transport readers to myriad wonderful places as each new page is turned, and I hope you enjoy this story as much as I did.

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