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The Secret River    by Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings, Leo Dillon & Diane Dillon order for
Secret River
by Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings
Order:  USA  Can
Atheneum, 2011 (1956)
* * *   Reviewed by Bob Walch

Rawlings was awarded a Newberry Prize for this children's story in 1956. Set during the time of the Great Depression, this is a tale of a family in great need. Calpurnia's parents don't have enough food and her father can't catch fish to sell to remedy the situation.

With the help of a special friend, Calpurnia discovers a secret river deep in the forest that provides an abundance of fish which should solve all the family's problems. Or will it? Only able to find the river once, Calpurnia discovers she can't locate it a second time when she goes back to catch more fish.

When she again consults the old woman who directed her to the river, the child learns a hard lesson. 'Child, sometimes a thing happens once, and does not ever happen anymore,' the woman tells her.

A story that distinguishes between need and greed, The Secret River, with its rich language and mystical happenings, is a special tale that you and your child will not soon forget.

The new art work of Leo and Diane Dillon makes this an even more memorable picture book and one that you will cherish for years to come. Appropriate for youngsters four or five years of age and older, this is a book that many adults as well as fans of Rawlings will delight in possessing.

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