"What is a river?" an inquisitive young girl asks her grandmother as the pair sits together on the river's banks. Like many questions posed by curious children, this one is deceptively simple in its asking. Yet, its answer spans the very world itself: geography and history, science and religion, industry and environmentalism. Through author-illustrator Monika Vaicenaviciene's eyes, the river becomes a vessel for enormous complexity, a lens through which the interconnectedness of our shared earth can be understood.
What Is a River? approaches the inquiry at its heart from all sides and angles, creating a richly imagined story woven of many answers, rather than a single explanation. A river is a thread, a home, a mystery, a name. This beautifully illustrated nonfiction picture book gives space to answers both conceptual and factual.
Born in Lithuania, Monika Vaicenaviciene graduated from the Komstak Art School in Sweden. What Is a River? is her debut picture book. In making the art for the book, she used a variety of materials, including pencils, watercolors, gouache, and digital tools.