You and the Bowerbird

Roaring Brook. Aug. 2023. 48p. Tr $19.99. ISBN 9781250849878.
PreS-Gr 1–A young girl loves spending days in her tree house observing birds and recording what she sees them doing. Wicks opens the book with a childlike illustration on lined notebook paper. This is unexpected and welcoming because it encourages young children to do the same. Satin is a bowerbird who is doing his best to attract a mate by building an avenue bower. An avenue bower is an U-shaped structure made from a multitude of sticks. Satin is a good builder, and there’s a pretty female, Pea, who’s interested, but other bowerbirds keep raiding it, instead of working and getting their own sticks. The young girl observes this and decides to help Satin without interfering, and so he wins his mate and Pea hatches her eggs. The “you” of the title is the girl, who has brown skin and black hair in two puffs; her actions teach children how to appreciate the natural world and how to be a scientist.
VERDICT A lovely amalgam of science and play; with careful maps of the action, this makes the world of birding thrilling while delivering a very happy ending.

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