The Water Princess by Susan Verde and Georgie Badiel, illustrated by Peter Reynolds

Published by G. P. Putnam’s Sons 

Summary:  Every day, the narrator goes with her mother to fetch water.  They start before dawn, and it’s late in the day when they get back.  The water is a dusty earth color and must be boiled before it can be drunk.  Despite these hardships, the girl’s family is happy.  Her mother sings as they travel to get the water, and her father gives her a warm greeting when he returns from the fields.  When she goes to sleep, her mother tells her to dream of someday when they will have clear, cold water nearby.  The last two pages tell more about the need for water for many people.  Links are provided to the Georgie Badiel Foundation, named for the supermodel who based this story on her childhood in Burkina Faso, and Ryan’s Well, an organization founded by a young Canadian boy.  Both groups are working to build wells in Africa and bring clean water to the people there.  40 pages; grades K-3.

Pros:  An eye-opening look at a difficult problem for many people around the world.  The illustrations are charming, and readers may be inspired to help out through the two organizations listed at the end.

Cons:  That this situation exists in the world today.

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