Cover image for Loon Lake
Loon Lake
London, Jonathan, 1947-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
San Francisco : Chronicle Books, [2002]

Physical Description:
36 pages : color illustrations ; 26 cm
A girl and her father encounter loons and other lake creatures during a magical nightime canoe ride.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR LG 3.0 0.5 64458.
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PIC. BK. Juvenile Fiction Central Closed Stacks
PIC.BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books
PIC.BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books
PIC.BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books

On Order



As father and daughter set up a lakeside campsite, somewhere across the water they hear the wild call of the loon. Later, paddling quietly across the starlit surface, they meet many lake dwellers but not elusive Loon. Finally Loon appears and in return for their patience and respect for his environment treats the girl and her father to an unexpected event. Jonathan Londons lyrical text is paired with Susan Fords beautiful pastel illustrations to create the gentle story of a father and daughter who share a magical, intimate moment with the natural world around them.

Author Notes

Jonathan London was born a "navy-brat" in Brooklyn, New York, and raised on Naval stations throughout the U.S. and Puerto Rico. He received a Masters Degree in Social Sciences but never formally studied literature or creative writing. He began to consider himself a writer about the time he graduated from college. After college he became a dancer in a modern dance company and worked at numerous low-paying jobs as a laborer or counselor. He wrote poems and short stories for adults, earning next to nothing despite being published in many literary magazines. For some 20 years before he penned his first children's book, London was writing poetry and short stories for adults. In the early 1970s, he was reading his poems in San Francisco jazz clubs, and those experiences found their way into his witty children's book Hip Cat, which has been featured on the PBS children's television show Reading Rainbow.

After writing down the tale The Owl Who Became the Moon in 1989, London began to wonder if other people might want to read it. He picked up his kids' copy of Winnie-the-Pooh and saw that the book was published by Dutton, so he casually decided to send his story to them. Surprisingly enough, they wanted to publish him. Working with different illustrators, and occasionally with co-authors, London has produced literally dozens of books. Most have appeared under his name, but some have come out under a pseudonym, which still remains a secret.He has published over forty books and has earned recognitions from organizations like the National Science Teachers Association.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

PreS.^-Gr.2. A girl and her father, camping out beside a lake, hear a loon at sunset. Papa tells his daughter a Tsimshian tale of how the loon got his "necklace," the white feathers that encircle his neck. Soon they climb into their canoe and paddle slowly across the moonlit lake, where they see an otter, a beaver, and finally the loon and his family. Written in first person from the girl's point of view, London's precise, vivid writing creates a mood of quiet delight in the observation of nature. The clean lines of the richly colored pictures sensitively depict the child's experience as they focus on the wildlife and the lake itself. Native American motifs enhance the design. In a two-page afterword, London provides information about the loon's history, habits, call, and even its name. A satisfying read-aloud. --Carolyn Phelan

School Library Journal Review

K-Gr 3-A father and daughter paddle their canoe at night, hoping to spy a reclusive loon. As they dip and glide, Papa tells her a Tsimshian tale about how the "rain bird" got its white necklace, and along their journey they see an otter and a beaver. The girl sees a loon move in the shadowy water, and they follow it at a distance, trailing the bird to "a screen of reeds," where they see its mate and two small, brown chicks. Later that night in their tent, they hear the loons' wail. London shares facts about loons in his lyrical, rhythmic text. An afterword provides even more information, such as the birds' eating habits and habitat. The friendly, conversational tone makes for an ideal read-aloud. The quiet prose is enhanced by Ford's lush pastel-and-gouache artwork, which captures the indigo hues of water at night as well as the loons' speckled plumage. A black-and-red patterned vertical border, resembling Native American art from the Pacific Northwest, separates the text from the paintings, but the illustrations burst out so that plants thrive and loons dive beyond their confines. A pleasant marriage of words and pictures.-Shawn Brommer, South Central Library System, Madison, WI (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.