by M.L. Matthews
Illustrated by Jamar Whiteside
Translated by Kiara Rainey
Trafford Publishing

"There is no delay for the race has begun. If you haven't started yet, then get up and run!"

Runners is a pedagogic tool which will prove useful in the classroom as well as the home. It is suitable for a wide age range from early childhood through intermediate primary school. As a picture book (as opposed to a chapter book) it uses clear, plain illustrations well integrated with the text, which is unified around people running. One outstanding feature of the text is that translations of the English into Spanish are set out on opposing pages. Separate illustrations, again well integrated with the text, accompany the Spanish translations, similar to the English. Runners will be useful both in Spanish immersion classes and bilingual English/Spanish classes or home education. The author is an experienced teacher in Memphis City schools. Matthews is a doctoral degree candidate and currentlyis in charge of the largest high school newspaper program in the U.S. The text is in the form of quatrains, such as the following typical verse:

"Artists run with pictures they have drawn.
Some runners run from dusk to dawn.
Chess players run with kings and pawns.
Runners run, not just stand on the lawn."

The illustration accompanying the English shows two ethnically diverse runners superimposed on a stylized, zoomed-in view of a portion of a chess board, and the one accompanying the Spanish shows a French artist carrying a pallet and brush. Runners is an expansive view of how all kinds of people run the race of life and how we run out our dreams and meet life's challenges.

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