The Secret Life of Birds by Moira Butterfield and Vivian Mineker (illustrator)

From TheBookbag
Jump to navigationJump to search


The Secret Life of Birds by Moira Butterfield and Vivian Mineker (illustrator)

0711266204.jpg
Buy The Secret Life of Birds by Moira Butterfield and Vivian Mineker (illustrator) at Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

Category: Children's Non-Fiction
Rating: 5/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: An excellent way of introducing children (and adults...) to the wonderful life of birds.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 48 Date: May 2022
Publisher: Happy Yak
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-0711266209

Share on: Facebook Follow us on Twitter Follow us on Instagram



I have recently discovered a great pleasure: I sit and watch the vast numbers of birds which visit our garden on a daily basis. An hour can pass without my noticing. I've established which species feed from the ground, which pop to the feeders for a quick snatch of some food and who settles in for a good munch but I wish I was more knowledgeable. It would have been wonderful if, as a child, I'd had access to a book such as The Secret Life of Birds. So – what is it?

Well, it has the look of a book you'd share with your child before they can read for themselves – the bedtime story, or the afternoon on the sofa – but it's rather more than that and generally suitable for a slightly older age group. The Secret Life of Birds will appeal to the child who is able to appreciate that birds find their way by following invisible pathways in the sky, or who can understand that birds have different ways of calling to each other. Don't worry if that sounds very dry and slightly complicated because what you will really love is the way that the book is put together. You'll know your own child best but I'd suggest that a seven-year-old is probably the youngest I'd be buying the book for. As for an upper age group, I'd think that by the age of about eleven something more advanced might work well – but I sat down to flick through the book and was rivetted. My husband – who is knowledgeable about birds – did exactly the same thing! We both learned a great deal.

The different sections are introduced by Speedy the Swift who'll tell you quite a bit about how swifts behave. Did you know that swift chicks do press-ups on their wingtips to make themselves stronger? We then learn about other birds. There are lots of gems of information (nest-building, different feathers and beaks, migratory journeys, for example) but they're interspersed with stories and myths from around the world, such as how the peacock got his colours – and became a rather kindlier bird in the process. The stories are relatively short and the knowledge is delivered in bite-sized chunks and accessible language. It's a fun book to read and best of all, you don't feel as though you've been educated when you turn the final page. It's a book which could set a child up with an interest which could stay with them throughout their life.

I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to the Bookbag.

Slightly younger children might appreciate Birdsong by Ellie Sandall. For a competent primer to get children thinking about birds, try My Book of Birds by Geraldo Valerio.

Please share on: Facebook Facebook, Follow us on Twitter Twitter and Follow us on Instagram Instagram

Buy The Secret Life of Birds by Moira Butterfield and Vivian Mineker (illustrator) at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Secret Life of Birds by Moira Butterfield and Vivian Mineker (illustrator) at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.

Buy The Secret Life of Birds by Moira Butterfield and Vivian Mineker (illustrator) at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Secret Life of Birds by Moira Butterfield and Vivian Mineker (illustrator) at Amazon.com.

The Secret Life of Birds by Moira Butterfield and Vivian Mineker (illustrator) Check prices, read reviews or buy from Foyles. Foyles currently charges £2.99 (first class £3.99) for orders under £25, over which delivery is free. You may also click and collect from a Foyles bookshop at no charge.

The Secret Life of Birds by Moira Butterfield and Vivian Mineker (illustrator) Check prices, read reviews or buy from Waterstones. Waterstones currently charges from £2.75 for orders under £20, over which delivery is free. You may also click and collect from a Waterstones bookshop at no charge.

Comments

Like to comment on this review?

Just send us an email and we'll put the best up on the site.


Peter said:

I was fascinated by this book, make sure that you read and enjoy it before passing it on to your kids. Cleverly written and told from a bird's perspective by a friendly swift (!) you will discover so much about birds and their day to day lives.