The Jungle

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In a hot land near the equator, a new day is beginning. Out of the morning mist a vast ocean of leaves appears. It is the roof of the jungle. What lies beneath--the varied teeming life of animals and plants--is vividly portrayed through the cycle of day and night in the jungle world. The narrative follows the sunrise-to-sunrise inner workings of a jungle, featuring stunning, layered descriptions of the smallest happenings, like the tune-up of an insect orchestra, and more boisterous, sudden events, like the rogue afternoon thunderstorm. Author and Illustrator Helen Borten artfully moves between simultaneous actions with great delicacy, and what results is a full impression of each moment in the jungle. The text is informational, yet intimate. Her illustrations skillfully render both the hot and cool colors of the jungle, juxtaposed against bold and black, stamp-like forms of the terrain's flora and fauna. The images are vibrant, beautifully complimenting a story that inspires a sense of reverence and wonder at the natural world. Considered Borten's masterpiece by many iconoclasts, The Jungle was inspired by a trip to Guatemala in 1967, when few others were going there, let alone a woman, to seek out images and stories to share with children back in the US.
Publication Date: 
June 12, 2018