The Washington Center for the Book has selected Olympia author/illustrator Nikki McClure's picture book "Waiting for High Tide" to represent Washington at the 2017 National Book Festival, sponsored by the Library of Congress, in Washington, D.C., on Sept. 2, 2017.

"Waiting for High Tide" (Abrams, 2016) tells the story of a young boy scouring the high tide line for treasures, practicing walking the plank and waiting for high tide so he can swim. While he waits, sea birds and other creatures mirror the family's behaviors: building and hunting, wading and eating. At long last the tide arrives, and human and animal alike savor the water.

McClure's picture book features full-bleed cut-paper illustrations in black and white with isolated use of blues and pinks. "Lavish with words and images in a story that is a worthy heir to Robert McCloskey's work... The sense of place is so rich that it seems possible to smell the air and hear the gulls," says a Publisher's Weekly starred review.

It is that sense of place that led to the book's selection to represent the state of Washington in the Pavilion of the States and in the Great Places, Great Reads publication at the National Book Festival. McClure said she wrote the book to "represent place and to have a beach book that wasn't East Coast and was for Washington kids."

McClure is an author and artist who works with cut-paper to create picture books and an annual calendar. "I cut my images from black paper with an X-Acto knife. Everything is connected," McClure says. "It's all one piece of paper, yet it now it holds a story." Her books include "To Market, To Market" (winner of the 2012 Washington State Book Award for Picture Book), "How to Be a Cat" and "Mama Is It Summer Yet?"

The Washington Center for the Book is a partnership of the Washington State Library and The Seattle Public Library. It is a state affiliate of the Center for the Book at the Library of Congress.