"A story of helping the earth to heal itself."

By Katie Mills Giorgio
The Gazette

Martin_Creekfinding coverIowa City author Jacqueline Briggs Martin and her friend Iowa City illustrator Claudia McGehee are both nature enthusiasts. It seems most fitting, then, that the creative duo teamed up to put together a lovely and inspiring new children’s picture book called “Creekfinding: A True Story.”

Set in the Driftless region of northeast Iowa, “Creekfinding” tells the story of a man who with the help of his friends (and some big trucks) works to uncover and reclaim a “lost” creek that had been filled in and buried under his farm. With bulldozers and excavators carving the curves and runs, the creek slowly comes to life — with dragonflies, leopard frogs, bluebirds and herons — and eventually, the surprising bright orange brook trout that are native to the Driftless area.

Indeed a true story, the man this book is based on, Michael Osterholm, grew up in the Driftless region of Iowa and now works as a professor at the University of Minnesota. Martin said she learned of his efforts when reading a Gazette article back in 2011 and knew right away that she wanted to tell the story.

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