Two intrepid librarians

Two intrepid librarians review the best nonfiction books for children

Monday, January 23, 2023

Border Crossings by Sneed B. Collard III

Border Crossings 

Sneed B. Collard III
Illustrated by Howard Gray   
Charlesbridge. 2023                                                         

We are aware of the emotional and economic impact the Wall that divides the United States with Mexico has on our society. In Border Crossings, science writer, Sneed B. Collard III asks readers to think about the environmental impact the Wall has on our natural world in this important informational picture book. 

Following two endangered ocelots, readers explore the beauty and biodiversity of this area, while also made aware of the many obstacles these species, and many others, face when they attempt to cross the border. 

In the story, the ocelots are traversing this remote territory in search of a mate. Encountering the barrier, “He tries to squeeze thru the wall, but the gaps are too narrow. He is searching for a way around the wall or under it when…harsh headlights approach, accompanied by a loud roaring sound.” Sprinting back into the brush for cover, this young ocelot will not find a mate this year. 

Sneed explains that for animals, the area surrounding the Wall are not separate lands. Running almost two thousand miles, through forest, grasslands, and brushlands, this habitat is home to “plants and animals found nowhere else on Earth.”

Supporting Collard’s powerful narrative are colorful illustrations, done in digital media, by Howard Gray.

Included is an Author’s Note, Glossary, and suggestions for further reading. 

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