Monday, July 24, 2023

You and the Bowerbird, a review - 7.24.23

The architect starts building his home.  He goes for grandeur, knowing one day this is the place he will eventually bring his mate.  Designing, planning, decorating... the architect works hard to make his place a true work of art.  Just when a lady friend shows some interest, pirates show up!  Stealing, pillaging, damaging, and breaking everything down, the architect must begin again.  Building, looking for those perfect accent pieces.  Of course, he has an audience watching his every move.  Maybe this time his lady friend will stay and be most impressed with his hard work.
Sounds like the premise to the latest Netflix show, right?  Nope, just the daily life of a satin bowerbird!

You and the Bowerbird by Maria Gianferrari
You and the Bowerbird
written by Maria Gianferrari
illustrated by Maris Wicks
published by Roaring Brook Press
publishes August 15th

In Maria Gianferrari's latest book, we get a glimpse at how hard a satin bowerbird works on his home, or bower.  He truly is an architect as he scouts the area for just the right pieces to design his home.  Something that surprises me is the male bowerbird makes his bower on the forest floor, not in a tree!  Better to place all of his found treasures!  And he especially needs a welcome mat.  Not one ordered from Amazon, but something blue, something found.  Perhaps a feather or sock!  But once the bower is created, the satin bowerbird always has to be on the lookout for pirate birds who are out to steal some of his treasures!  It really is rough out in nature!  These birds are found in Australia.  Even if they aren't local, they are fascinating birds to learn about!

Maris Wicks' illustrations are bright, bold, and will catch a young reader's eye, just like the color blue attracts a male satin bowerbird!  At times, Wicks' gives us the perspective of a young birder looking through binoculars at these fascinating creatures.  Other layouts have a couple of frames that give it more of a notebook feeling.  Of course if you peek under the book jacket you'll find the book looking like a composition notebook, which goes along with the observation and note-taking the young girl seems to be doing.

The text is full of vibrant verbs that so many of Gianferrari's books contain.  I always feel like I could act out her stories with her playful words.  With words like inspect, steals, scours, snatches, and pillages, you can't help but wiggle in your seat as you read this exciting story!

This is a must have book for your science units that talk about animal instincts, habitats, and traits.  The bowerbirds and their habits are so unique, I know young readers will want to know more about them!

About author Maria Gianferrari:
Maria Gianferrari lives in Massachusetts and loves bird-watching from her kitchen window while drinking her morning cup of tea. She has written more than a dozen books, including Coyote Moon, Hello Goodbye Dog, Hawk Rising, and most recently Bobcat Prowling. Her next title with Roaring Brook Press is To Dogs, With Love, which releases in December.

Would you like to have a copy of this book for your library?  Macmillan Publishing has generously offered a copy for giveaway for one reader (US addresses only).  Winner will be selected on July 31st!  For an extra entry, visit @readingthroughtheages_ on Instagram!