Bubbles . . . Up!

by Jacqueline Davies (Author) Sonia Sánchez (Illustrator)

Bubbles . . . Up!
Reading Level: K − 1st Grade

An everyday visit to the pool transforms into an unforgettable celebration of the water in this remarkable picture book from Jacqueline Davies, the award-winning author of children's classic The Lemonade War, and Sonia Sánchez, the illustrator of Meg Medina's Evelyn Del Rey Is Moving Away.

A day at the community pool is full of unwater magic--dunking and diving with friends; somersaulting, walking on your hands, and bursting up through the surface like a tortoise. But when a thunderstorm comes and a little brother ventures too close to the pool's edge, will our main character be quick enough and brave enough to save the day?

In this energetic read-aloud, the words swim off the pages as the underwater world comes to life through lush, dynamic illustrations and visual poetry. Journey to an imaginative world where, always and forever, bubbles . . . rise . . . UP!


Starred Review
Davies' cascading lines of verse text read aloud beautifully, rewarding listeners with wordplay [and leave] space for Sánchez's effervescent illustrations to work their magic. The imaginative underwater scenes are particularly fine. This high-spirited picture book celebrates the joy in swimming. A mesmerizing book that conjures up a summer day.


Starred Review

Superbly splashy, immersive, and effervescent.

School Library Journal

K-Gr 2—A community pool is a place of wonder—mouth, nose, or ear bubbles all rise through water, filled with light. A small pink-skinned girl gives readers the tour, to follow the bubbles up until you break the surface, and dive back in. All in the pool celebrate life under water. One can under-sit, under-talk, under-stand, or complete an under-handstand. Similes communicate the motion amid bubbles "light as butterflies," as the girl urges her body up to "surface like a porpoise" and "shoot like a rocket ship." Families of all races play in the water as text and word placement highlight movement in digital paintings with swirls of dark and light-filtered color. Descriptive verse text with a scribble of clouds capture a bubble-filled watery world. It's easy for swimmers to dream and imagine the pool filled with saltwater depths of treasure before an ominous rumble announces a thunderstorm. The interruption provides both a visual downpour and an alliterative storm of words, and soon, everyone is back in the water. VERDICT A recommended first purchase for all libraries, this title will interest readers who love the world underwater, or those who recognize the freedom and confidence borne of immersive play.—Mary Elam, Learning Media Services, Plano I.S.D., TX

Copyright 2021 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission

Review quotes

Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Katherine Tegen Books
Publication date
May 20, 2021
BISAC categories
JUV051000 - Juvenile Fiction | Imagination & Play
JUV013070 - Juvenile Fiction | Family | Siblings
JUV032060 - Juvenile Fiction | Sports & Recreation | Water Sports
Library of Congress categories

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