STARRED REVIEW
August 2016

A mother coyote’s nighttime hunt

By Maria Gianferrari, illustrated by Bagram Ibatoulline
Review by
Her intense, yellow eyes scanning the night, Mother Coyote is watching and following and digging and leaping. With pups waiting in her den, the success of her nightly hunt is vital. A window into a rarely seen world, Coyote Moon is a unique find.
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Her intense, yellow eyes scanning the night, Mother Coyote is watching and following and digging and leaping. With pups waiting in her den, the success of her nightly hunt is vital. A window into a rarely seen world, Coyote Moon is a unique find.

Gifted storyteller Maria Gianferrari narrates Coyote’s story with a directness that echoes Coyote’s serious mission, and her descriptive language and subtle use of alliteration make for a captivating read-aloud. Renowned illustrator Bagram Ibatoulline skillfully brings us along for the hunt with art as lifelike as a photograph, but with an ethereal edge. Ibatoulline leads us through the richly detailed night, peering through brush and hiding from Coyote’s prey. He opens up a moonlit world that is far from monotone, with texture and layers that give us a unique and intimate look at our world when it belongs to those who depend on the night. Gianferrari’s narrative is vivid enough to stand without any images, and Ibatoulline’s art would make a lovely wordless picture book—but woven together, they tell a story that is striking and transfixing. 

A truthful but non-gory look at the circle of life, Coyote Moon concludes with two pages of facts, making it a fascinating and useful book for libraries and classrooms. From cover to cover, from sunset to moonrise, Coyote Moon will mesmerize and intrigue—and have you peering into the nighttime for your own coyote glimpse.

 

This article was originally published in the August 2016 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

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Coyote Moon

Coyote Moon

By Maria Gianferrari, illustrated by Bagram Ibatoulline
Roaring Brook
ISBN 9781626720411

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