Review Blog

May 06 2014

Bring on the birds by Susan Stockdale

cover image

Working Title Press, 2014. ISBN 9781921504594.
(Age: Pre-school) Recommended. Birds, Environment. In simple rhyming text, Stockdale showcases a number of birds, their bold bright colours standing out from the spare backgrounds. Each of the twenty three birds chosen for this book is presented on an unadorned page, making the bird and its plumage stand out for younger readers. The birds include, an owl, penguin, ostrich, peacock and crane, and while they are designated as swooping birds or swimming birds in the text, it is at the end that we find their real names and information about each bird illustrated.
Stockdale cleverly presents exotic birds in the majority of her book, coming closer to home towards the end with a heron, duck and robin, the final robin shown with children watching through the window. In this way she refines the number of birds known by the child bringing it back to something they may have seen themselves, watching in the garden. The bold illustrations, accompanied by large print text makes it easier for a child to read for themselves, or an adult to read out to a child, asking them to recognise things about the birds illustrated. Because she puts the birds into a category (eg diving or swimming) the text allows the child to ask questions or the reader to encourage questions or to give information. This is a user friendly book for pre-school age children introducing them to a wide variety of birds and how they behave.
Fran Knight

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