Review Blog

Jul 04 2016

Flight of the honey bee by Raymond Huber

cover image

Ill. by Brian Lovelock. Walker Books, 2015. ISBN 9781925126266
(Age: 5+) Highly recommended. Bees, Environment, Honey. Scout's day spent searching for a new pasture from which to collect nectar to take back to the hive, ends happily when she finds a swathe of blue flowers. Through her flight she must avoid obstacles: strong wind, a hungry blackbird, a sudden rain storm, complete with hail stones and when arriving back at the hive, she finds that a wasp is trying to get in to eat the nectar and the eggs.
During her flight pollen in the flowers is attracted to her body and she then takes this to other flowers, where pollination occurs. She drinks the nectar from the flowers, using the tip of her tongue, shaped like a small spoon. Once back at the hive, she dances, giving instructions to the rest of her family about the place where these flowers are. They then go out to bring back more nectar.
All the features of a bee and its part in the pollination of plants is given in this amazing book, where every word is redolent with meaning.
One in the acclaimed Walker Nature Storybooks series, this like the others presents a story which is filled with information, so insinuated within the tale that the reader assimilates these facts readily. The story sits alongside a non fiction text, usually towards the bottom of each page. Both texts add to the knowledge of the reader, both compliment each other and are fascinating to read. The reader is involved in Scout's story as she avoids threats and searches for the flowers, while taking in the facts given about the bees and the hive.
As with others in this wonderful series, a brief index is given at the back of the book alongside information about the author and illustrator, with a small piece about the importance of bees and what we can do to help them survive.
The vivacious water colour and pencil illustrations serve the story well, giving all readers, young and old, a firm understanding of the look of the honey bee and making it so endearing without giving it human characteristics, as the story is followed.
Excellent teacher notes are given on the Walker Books website.
Fran Knight

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