Growing and Going: A Review of LEAPS AND BOUNCE by Susan Hood, illustrated by Matthew Cordell

I’d be lying if I said that spring was my favorite season. Fall is definitely my favorite.

However, spring comes in a close second. There is something about the blossoming flowers, the return of birds chirping, and the “newness” of the season that is so refreshing.

During spring, frogs emerge from hibernation and begin to lay eggs. In her second book with Matthew Cordell, Susan Hood celebrates the excitement and possibilities of growth through the hatching of frog eggs and metamorphosis of tadpoles into frogs in Leaps and Bounce. 

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“…just as sure as rivers flow, changes come to all who grow.”

The theme of embracing and celebrating change was prevalent through the text and art of this book. Children face many changes and challenges as they grow up, and we can either teach them to embrace it, or run away from it. This book encourages readers to fully embrace and jubilate in changes that take place.

As the tadpoles grow, their tales emerge, and soon, so do arms and legs, and many other changes. Are they changing or are they growing? The answer is: BOTH.

And not only are they changing, and growing, they are GOING. And soon, GONE. Brand new frogs off to begin lives of their own.

Matthew Cordell’s signature styles fully reflect the notion of embracing change that Susan Hood is trying to convey. Through lively and excited facial expressions, we clearly see this is something the frogs are excited about.

The bouncy, rhythmic text is sure to be an encourager of change as well.

And as the frogs change, the colors and tone of the book change as well. From bright, sunny beginnings, to calm, subdued colors as the sun sets, there is comfort in knowing that as we change, there is also eventually a calmness in our lives.

The various fold-outs scattered through the book are a joy to pull back and reveal changes and new things.

A child is bound to leap and bounce and be encouraged that changes help them grow after reading this new title.

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