River

river

      River is an adventure book, sort of. A young woman launches her canoe in the Adirondacks and paddles three-hundred-miles down the Hudson River to New York City, and home. A modern Odyssey, with fewer monsters and more tugboats.
      I did not canoe down the Hudson myself — I’m not a capable enough canoer. But as I explored up and down the river, I think I felt the same wonder of any adventurer. I loved discovering the Hudson’s forested headwaters, or sketching New York harbor from a ferry, or biking over to the Brooklyn Navy Yard to draw boats. My sketchbook filled up. I loved drawing my daughters, too — they modeled as the canoer, sitting on our couch and holding a paddle (I imagine the book’s hero as my daughters, grown up). Then I put everything together and wrote the story.
      I don’t know if I’ve enjoyed making a book more. Observation is at the heart of why I love making books. Seeing something new, overcoming that unmoored feeling of being far from home, then coming home. And with luck, when we see the world in all its beauty, whether it’s the Hudson River or our local park, we protect it. That’s my hope for this book.

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River by Elisha Cooper

River by Elisha Cooper

River by Elisha Cooper

River by Elisha Cooper