Matt is miserable. The subdivision where he now lives is surrounded by nothing but muddy fields of rocks and sticks. But when Matt ventures out, his imagination kicks in. He draws a muddy, winding line and names it Snake River. A pile of rocks becomes the Dog Tooth Mountains. Just like that, Mattland is born. Soon a little girl shows up with a handful of helpful odds and ends. Piece by piece, she and Matt expand their new world with popsicle-stick bridges and scrap-paper boats. And when a rainstorm finally threatens to wash everything away, all the neighborhood kids appear and help stave off the flood. Evocative of childhood friendships and with sublime illustrations that brighten in color as the story progresses, Mattland is an inspiring ode to cooperative play.
Hazel Hutchins has written dozens of books for children and has won numerous awards, including "Parenting" magazine's Reading Magic Award. She lives in Canmore, Alberta.
Gail Herbert is the award-winning author of several short stories and poems. This is her first work for children. She lives outside of Toronto.
Dusan Petricic's multiple award-winning illustrations appear in more than 20 children's books, including "Bashful Bob and Doleful Dorinda" by Margaret Atwood. He lives in Toronto.