Published by Flying Eye Books, 2016.
As soon as I heard about this book I knew that I wanted to read it and I haven’t been disappointed. It’s a beautiful book. The illustrations are stunning and the production quality is exceptional too: thick, cream-coloured pages and a gorgeous canvas cover.
Penguin books always catch my eye and this one has captured my heart too. We follow an Adélie penguin chick as she adventures across Antarctica. Page after beautiful page filled with penguins. Penguins waddling, tobogganing, swimming, diving and leaping – heaven!
Ella Bailey has struck the perfect balance between entertaining and informing. She includes a range of interesting facts but she doesn’t overload the reader with information. We learn about penguin nesting grounds, their diet and their predators. We are told how penguins have adapted to their environment and why they spend so long at sea. Many other Antarctic animals feature in the book but they are not always named in the text. This is where the fabulous endpapers come into their own. At the front of the book, all the animals living above the ice are illustrated and labelled. At the back of the book, we learn the names of the animals living under the ice. We had great fun spotting and identifying the different animals.
There’s plenty of scope for further discussion as the illustrations and text will prompt interesting questions from young readers. For example, we are shown the aurora australis but nothing is written about them specifically. There are also opportunities to introduce the concepts of food chains and ecosystems to older readers.
The language is rich too – sometimes poetic, sometimes technical or specialist.
This is a gem of a book – the perfect introduction to children’s non-fiction.
Suitable for children aged 2+
Thank you to Flying Eye Books for sending me this book to review.