Awards, Reviews and Press


Silver Medal 2018 Nautilus Award Winner

The 2018 Riverby Award awarded by the John Burroughs Association

The 2018 Green Earth Book Award awarded by the Nature Generation


Recent Reviews

“Told in a soft spoken, poetic voice akin to that of Jane Yolen’s Owl MoonSalamander Sky brings wonder and anticipation in droves. Farber’s text has all the great lean-in qualities of a storied secret passed among friends in the lunch room, and Sodano’s illustrations lead readers by mere flashlight and anticipation to a place of fascination. Salamander Sky has within its pages the power to ignite curiosity in the unexplored backyard while at the same time respecting and not disrupting nature’s hand in the survival of a species. And what could be better than that?” — Matthew Winner, Founder, All the Wonders

“….it’s a quiet, patient story, beautifully reflected in Sodano’s paintings, which are done with colored inks, crayon, water-soluble pencils, and digital techniques. These show a black-haired, olive-skinned child and her diverse classmates, salamanders at varying life stages, and the early-spring woodland world near her home. There’s a map showing that spotted salamanders (the species depicted) range broadly down the East Coast and into the Midwest. These excellent illustrations help bring the girl’s expedition to life and add information, too.

A lovely vehicle for sharing nature with children. (Informational picture book. 4-8)”  

Kirkus Reviews

“The secret life of the spotted salamander unfolds as April anticipates her special role in their yearly migration from underground habitats beneath the forest floor to nearby ponds and wetlands. Hushed and reverent with flashlights and raincoats, mother and daughter venture out at night to carefully help the slowly creeping travelers safely across the roadway. Share in their joy, found through the care and conservation of the shrinking salamander populations of eastern North America.”

Foreword Reviews

“Salamander Sky brings you in close and shares a beautiful secret with you from the natural world– the spotted salamander’s road crossing to water in springtime. It happens at night, and the excitement her young protagonist feels for this aptly-named “bulgy-eyed beauty” is palpable. What young child doesn’t want an undercover (in this case, under rain coat and boots) operation in the dark of night? With moody, Zen-inspired watercolor illustrations that capture the essence of the spring season, this information-heavy text will be perfect for elementary school classrooms and nature-based curriculums. But at its heart, Salamander Sky is a love letter to this vulnerable creature that will inspire children and their families to jump right in and be citizen scientists.”

—Jane Knight of Bear Pond Books

“A sweet, engaging story for young students with an interest in wildlife biology and conservation. Farber’s obvious passion for her subject shines through her vivid words and gentle pacing while Sodano’s illustrations weave in new information on salamander biology and human impact. This book is sure to make readers want to pull on their boots and save some salamanders!”

—Katherine Roy, Author and Illustrator of How to be an Elephant

Recent Press


A Science Story: Article in KidsVT magazine