A newer addition to Zoderkidz's growing "I Can Read!" series is Crystal Bowman's Otter and Owl Set Sail, a level 1 book for beginning readers.
Crystal Bowman may be best known for her rhyming picture books, but in this charming tale of an owl and otter's misadventures, she writes in prose.
After a lot of thinking, Owl decides to build a boat. He and his friend Otter grab a raft, add an old shirt to make a sail, and plop it into the pond. But the boat doesn't go anywhere. Owl thinks some more, then decides they should blow on the sail. But the boat doesn't move. So they try singing a sailing song at the top of their lungs. Nothing. And on and on they go until Owl sadly decides he's built a bad boat. "You made a fine sailboat," Otter says. "All we need is wind." Owl says he can't make wind. But God can, Otter declares.
The friends go home, and Owl is thrilled when he wakes up the next morning and the leaves are rustling. He wakes up Otter. "God made wind today!" he says, and they try again to sail their boat. This time, they sail all the way to the other end of the pond.
What I Like: This is a simple but engaging tale that quietly proclaims God as Creator. The illustrations by Kevin Zimmer are delightful, colorful, and bring to life the lovable Otter and Owl.
What I Dislike: Nothing.
Overall Rating: Excellent.
Age Appeal: According to the publisher, 4 to 8, but my 3 year adores it as a read-to-me story.
Publisher Info: Zonderkidz, 2008; ISBN: 0310717043; paperback; $3.99