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by Shari Becker & illustrated by Nicole Wong

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 2006
ISBN: 1-58089-047-4
Publisher: Charlesbridge

Maxwell is disappointed by the predictability of the new park, but then he sees the mountain: “It was awesome. It was glorious. It was big.” Maxwell is inextricably drawn to climbing it, though Mom won’t allow it. At dinner, Maxwell channels Close Encounters of the Third kind as he builds a mountain of mashed potatoes. His parents tell him that one must be a great outdoorsman to achieve such an ascent. With resolve, Maxwell reads up, draws a map and packs supplies, first aid and food. Seeing Maxwell’s eagerness, his parents finally consent. Tackling the mountain at last, Maxwell follows the yellow dots, apparently left by others, that mark a trail, while his parents wait below. At first it’s easy, but gradually the climb becomes steeper and the pebbles graduate to boulders. Obstacles abound, but the final spread shows the splendid view of Maxwell’s triumph. Wong’s illustrations are elegant, accentuated by hues of mild greens, yellows and blues. This mini-adventure is an absorbing story of determination and a boy’s growing independence. (Picture book. 4-6)