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The Watcher
HARDCOVER; Published: 10/9/2017
ISBN: 978-0-8028-5445-2
Price: $ 17.00
42 Pages
Trim Size, in inches: 10 x 10
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A poetic story inspired by Psalm 121

Jordan lives in fear of Tanya, the class bully. But Tanya has worries of her own, no matter how much she tries to ignore them. It seems impossible that Jordan and Tanya could be anything other than enemies, but the Lord is watching over them, guiding each of them along a path that might just help them to understand one another.

Nikki Grimes takes the words of a Psalm 121 and masterfully transforms them into a golden shovel poem of compassion, friendship, and faith. Coupled with powerful artwork from Bryan Collier, this heartfelt story is one that readers will treasure.

Kirkus Reviews Best Children’s Books of the Year List (2017) 

Junior Library Guild Selection (2018) 

Foreword Reviews Foreword INDIES Bronze Winner (2017)

2018 World Magazine: Picture Book of the Year
NCTE Notable Poetry Books 2018

Kirkus Reviews (STARRED review)
“Wilder Award–winning author Grimes delivers a compact yet powerful message of hope and encouragement based on Psalm 121. . . . A sumptuous work filled with a deliciously wrapped center—perfect for classrooms, school, public, or church libraries, or home: wherever hearts go for mending.”
Publishers Weekly (STARRED review)
“Drawing on Psalm 121 and a poetic technique called the Golden Shovel, Grimes creates a cycle of poems about two children, Jordan and Tanya, who become friends through their intense faith and the arrival of a new classmate. . . . The language, by turns soaring and searing, requires close attention, but its beauty is brought to earth in the best way by Collier’s resonant photo-collages.”

Booklist (STARRED review)
“In short bursts of poetry, readers meet Jordan, who fears his tormentor, and Tanya, the bully, whose stuttering isolates her. . . . Readers will be moved by Tanya’s fears and Jordan’s ability to reach out. Collier uses his look-and-look-again collage work, here in earth tones, to capture and extend the emotions bubbling near the surface. Childhood concerns, some common, some not, are elevated by the infusion of God into this wholly (and holy) original mix.”
Shelf Awareness (STARRED review)
"Hopeful and affecting, Grimes and Collier's third collaboration provides exquisite affirmation of the healing power of forgiveness and compassion."
Christian Century
"One of the most successful recent expansions of a biblical story for children. . . . Text and illustration combine in a way that sparks and sustains imaginative engagement."