Down Under the Pier

Down Under the Pier
Co-Authors / Illustrators
Age Range
Release Date
April 07, 2020
Buy This Book
There’s lots of fun to be had up on the beach pier, but it’s down underneath where the true—and totally free—magic happens

There’s lots of fun to be had up on the pier—the Ferris wheel, the rollercoaster, Skee-Ball and Whac-A-Mole, cotton candy, copper coins, the carousel. But it’s down under the pier, at low tide, where the real magic can be found. The best part? It’s free. Nell Beckerman’s poetic text and deep love of the intertidal zone, and Rachell Sumpter’s dreamy, “endless summer” art make this the perfect beach book.

Editor review

1 review
intriguing picture book about the nautical world under the pier
Overall rating
Writing Style
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
Learning Value
DOWN UNDER THE PIER is a beautifully illustrated poem about the magic that happens, not only above, but also below the pier. With a focus on nature and the exploration that can occur when the tide moves out. The book also features information about the animals that can be found under the pier during low tide.

This book encourages connecting with and exploring nature through the gentle poem and vivid descriptions. Juxtaposed with the fun of the carnival that happens above the pier, both are equally fun though under the pier is free.

What I loved: The text flows poetically and is quite lovely to read aloud. The illustrations are colorful and full of interesting details that make this a delight to look through. With the added information at the end about the animals who live below the pier, this book is also educational and encourages exploration of nature. This may appeal more to older picture book readers at the elementary school age as the poetic nature of the text is not very direct and may be too complex for toddlers/preschoolers, though audibly pleasing.

What left me wanting more: As a small thing, the text is pretty small and hard to read aloud, but this does give more real estate to the beautiful illustrations.

Final verdict: With gorgeous illustrations and poetic text, DOWN UNDER THE PIER is a charming book about, ultimately, nature and the fascinating animals who live there. This will appeal to elementary school aged readers and is a great choice for reading aloud.
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