Sparrow Loves Birds

Little, Brown/Christy Ottaviano. Jun. 2024. 40p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9780316307222.
Gr 2-4–Sparrow is named after a bird. She loves birdwatching. Luckily, her town is chock full of birds. Robins. Geese. Even vultures circle overhead (in a cute way). The onomatopoeia used in the story is strong, with bird calls carefully spelled out. Aside from the sounds of the birds, the text can be cumbersome, but it gives Anthony’s bird illustrations space to shine. Her birds are lovingly rendered in digital pencil and watercolor. A fun spread shows Sparrow in front of her own bird drawings. This spread shows the artist’s range: she can represent childlike bird drawings as well as more realistic but still whimsical, illustrations. Sparrow has brown skin and braids, and birding comes across as a hobby not just for retirees. The back matter has a detailed and useful illustrated bird glossary for young readers.
VERDICT The glossary makes this a worthy addition to a collection, especially one that offers a birdwatching kit for little birders in its Library of Things.

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