Plume: Festival seeker by Tania McCartney

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In Plume: festival seeker, Plume excitedly sets up a calendar of world festivals and invites all his penguin friends to join him on a festival tour of the world on the Albatross Express. Even after offering chocolate as an enticement, no one wants to join him, so he heads off on his own with Ava the albatross.

Their first stop is Scotland to celebrate the Up Helly Aa, where a Viking boat called a galley is set on fire. This celebrates the end of the Christmas season. Plume returns home to have a fire festival with his friends but fire and ice do not mix! A month later Plume flies into Brazil to celibrate the Rio Carnival where Portuguese culture is celebrated with colour, music and spectacular costumes. He tries to do the same in Antarctica, but it just does not work. Next Plume is off to India to celebrate Holi. The spreading of colour is everywhere but once again, it just does not appeal to his penguin friends in Antarctica.

Throughout the rest of the year, Plume travels to Guatemala to celebrate Easter, Algeria to celebrate Eid al-Fitr, South Korea to celebrate the Boryeong Mud Festival, in Spain, La Tomatina, in Costa Rica, the Day Of Masquerade, and Diwali in Fiji. Finally, it is Christmas Eve in Antarctica and Plume tempts his friends with all sorts of Christmas treats. When he wakes up, Plume discovers his penguin friends have a wonderful surprise in store for him.

As with the other earlier books in the series, these beautifully illustrated and engaging stories full of diverse cultural snapshots are a must have for all home, school and public libraries.

Themes: Penguins, World Festivals, Culture, Diversity.

Kathryn Beilby