Book Review: Bird to Bird, by Claire Saxby

Available in bookshops nationwide.

cv_bird_to_bird.jpgDeep in a forest a bird drops a seed. The seed grows into a tree and that tree is taken by men into a busy city and across the wide ocean to a foreign land where it is reused, recycled and repurposed many times before it can return to a forest.

Bird to Bird is an aesthetic circular narrative. Claire Saxby’s poetic and repetitive words paired with Wayne Harris’s dreamy illustrations make this brief journey through nature, history and time a pleasant read. Though minimalist, the narrative is still able to tell a huge story and that’s what I enjoyed most about this short tale.

I’ve found myself reading Bird to Bird over and over, appreciating both the words and the illustrations. It’s a very cleverly written book and I enjoyed the many layers of the story.

Reviewed by Alana Bird

Bird to Bird
by Claire Saxby
Published by Black Dog Books
ISBN 9781925381122

Book Review: Atmospheric: The Burning Story of Climate Change, by Carole Wilkinson

cv_atmosphericAvailable in bookshops nationwide.

The topic of climate change is one of those contentious subjects that gets people so puffed up they can literally blow their stacks during what started out as a gentle discussion on changes in the weather pattern.

The central points of reference in Wilkinson’s book are the atmosphere’s importance to us and the way we have treated it. It is Wilkinson’s contention – backed up by a truckload of evidence – that we use our atmosphere like a rubbish dump, putting into it whatever we feel like, without thought of consequences: treating the atmosphere as we would a sack of recycling rubbish. Once we can no longer see it, we don’t give a poke.

This is not new behaviour, as Wilkinson points out: humans have been polluting the atmosphere for a very long time, especially in an industrial sense. Damage has been done and we need to take responsibility for cleaning it up and changing our behaviour, as individuals and as a society, whether in a home/school or work situation. The atmosphere so affects the quality of the life we live, we would be foolish not to care.

We need to educate and we need to start that educating from the get go. Preschools and Primary Schools are introducing and teaching ways and means right across the curriculum to do this throughout New Zealand, we need to support this as much as possible and introduce the lessons the children can teach us in our home/work space.

This is a well-written, easy-to-read-and-understand book, with great illustrations. While directed at the YA market, there should be a copy of this book in every School and Public Library as it is an excellent resource for children from Primary School onwards and for adults as well.

Reviewed by Marion Dreadon

Atmospheric: The Burning Story of Climate Change
by Carole Wilkinson
Published by Black Dog Books
ISBN 9781925126372

Book Review: Hey Mum, I love you, by Corinne Fenton

Available in bookstores nationwide. 

Corinne Fenton is an Australian children’s cv_hey_mum_i_love_youauthor living in Melbourne. She has written a number of books – Curious Charlotte, Mum and the Blowfly, being a couple of them. She also writes under the name Corinne King.

Hey Mum, I love you is a beautiful book with large photos accompanying the text. ‘Hey Mum, I love you more than the prickliest tickle, the softest sigh, the best kept secret.’ The photos are mainly of female animals with their young showing affection (a monkey having a cuddle with its Mum).

The text is simple and would absolutely appeal to very small children. I can imagine Mum’s reading this book and doing some of the actions with their children. It would make ideal reading for bedtime.

The photos are quite stunning. I can’t wait to read this to my little grandson Logan (2) in Queenstown when we visit in a couple of months.

Reviewed by Christine Frayling

Hey Mum, I love you
by Corinne Fenton
Published by Black Dog Books
ISBN 9781922244581



Book review: Blood Brothers by Carole Wilkinson

This book is in bookstores now.

“The fourth book in the intriguing series of Dragon Keeper.

You were translating a transcript, because no one (but you) knew that language. Your eyes started aching and it was hard to keep your eyes open. You went to refill your water jar and you heard a wind-chime sound, then you turned. Standing in front of you was a dragon.

That is how Kai (the dragon) and Tao (the boy who was translating the transcript) kind-of knew each other. Kai said he was on a quest and Tao was his dragon keeper. On the way, there was a battle and by coincidence they met a girl called Pema. She was a thief, and good at telling white lies. There were a lot of difficulties along the way and at one point everybody was separated. Even Tao and Kai.

Then the real problem came. Sha. She was a kind healer, until when she lost her emotions over love and her dragon lings. While she was flying down, lonely as ever, she got captured. After that Sha got turned into a man-eating beast. One day Tao and Kai was near that area where Sha was one day…
Will Tao and Kai survive? What happened to Sha? Will there be a happy ending? Read the book to find out.

I felt the book was a page-turner and a book that you can’t put down.”

Reviewed by Jennia Deng, aged 12.

Blood Brothers
by Carole Wilkinson
Published by Black Dog Books
ISBN 9781742031897