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Reviewed by Bruce Arrington for Readers' Favorite
Saturday Safari by Caren Cantrell is a short children’s illustrated adventure story. We follow Elliot, a young boy, through his adventures as he explores outside his home, using his imagination to enhance his story. Ordinary objects turn into a safari ride quest filled with danger, excitement and lots of fun. I absolutely loved this book. The artwork by Gail Maguire perfectly represents what Elliot sees in his mind. It is filled with abundant color and detail. I can imagine children wanting to see those pictures repeatedly.
The story itself pushes Elliot into the great outdoors, where true adventure awaits. Note that he isn’t using any form of electronics to entertain himself, but rather allows his imagination to take him where no game or movie could ever go. This is a personal adventure that Elliot creates, his own world in which he imagines being whatever he wants. Children who read books such as these are inspired to think for themselves, leaving the imagination unfettered and free to develop. They can be anyone, do anything, go anywhere. I also appreciate the support of the parent. She is there to encourage him, and her desire to view the pictures at the end of the story simply reinforces to Elliot how important his own personal adventures are. Saturday Safari by Caren Cantrell captures the significance of imagination in children and throws it out there in story form for all to see. It is a bright, positive message that will inspire children everywhere. Highly recommended.