I Talk Like a River by Jordan Scott

Winner of the Schneider Family Book Award

What if words got stuck in the back of your mouth whenever you tried to speak? What if they never came out the way you wanted them to?

Sometimes it takes a change of perspective to get the words flowing.

A New York Times Best Children’s Book of the Year

I wake up each morning with the sounds of words all around me.

And I can’t say them all . . .

When a boy who stutters feels isolated, alone, and incapable of communicating in the way he’d like, it takes a kindly father and a walk by the river to help him find his voice. Compassionate parents everywhere will instantly recognize a father’s ability to reconnect a child with the world around him.

Poet Jordan Scott writes movingly in this powerful and ultimately uplifting book, based on his own experience, and masterfully illustrated by Greenaway Medalist Sydney Smith. A book for any child who feels lost, lonely, or unable to fit in.

An American Library Association Notable Children’s Book
Named a Best Book of the Year by The Wall Street JournalPeople Magazine, NPR, Kirkus ReviewsShelf Awareness, Bookpage, School Library JournalPublishers Weekly, Publishers Lunch, and more!
Horn Book Fanfare Best Book of the Year
A Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection
A Chicago Public Library Best Book of the Year
A CBC Best Picture Book of the Year


Waterstones Says

With truly breathtaking illustrations from former Kate Greenaway Medal winner Sydney Smith, Scott’s sensitive and beautifully judged tale about disfluency hits upon the perfect metaphor with style and charm.


Jordan Scott lives on Vancouver Island, Canada, with his wife and two sons.

Jordan was the recipient of the 2018 Latner Writers’ Trust Poetry Prize for his contributions to Canadian poetry. I Talk Like a River is his first book for children

Sydney Smith has illustrated multiple children’s books, including Small in the City, Town Is by the Sea, the winner of the Kate Greenaway Medal, The White Cat and the Monk, written by Jo Ellen Bogart, and the acclaimed Footpath Flowers, which was a New York Times Children’s Book of the Year and a winner of the Governor General Award for Illustration.


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