|(Photo from Creative Commons)|
Told in three lines of 5, 7, and 5 syllables, haiku is an ancient and popular form for nature poetry. Gianferrari's story is lyrically told and packs in a lot of information in these sparse lines. The tale is so well told that most young readers probably won't even realize it is poetry. Some words will need defining (ex. Mama mantles is used to mean the spreading of wings and tail to cover something) but overall this will be very readable and understandable by most 2-6 graders.
Back matter provides more information on Great Horned Owls, including their big eyes, their weight and wingspan, and what they eat. References are made to excellent websites, including "Owl Pages," a great site that provides information on owls of the world and provides sound files to hear the owls.
Dreamy illustrations by Jonathan Voss were created using sepia ink and watercolors and provide clear representations of the owls' cycle of life, habitat, and habits.
Like most owls, Great Horned Owls are primarily nocturnal so we have to listen for them after dark. They usually begin hunting at dusk, so if you are lucky you may catch sight of this swift bird looking for food to bring back to a nest. Look also on fence posts and tree limbs on the edges of open areas. Unlike many birds, Great Horned Owls nest during the winter, so look high in trees like cottonwoods for birds incubating eggs. One way to encourage owls to stick around in your neighborhood is to build owl houses for them to nest in. These can be purchased but simple plans are also available on the Internet.
PRIZE: WHOOO? YOUU! The publisher, who provided an advanced copy of the book to me for review, will give away a copy to a US resident. Leave a comment here or email your information to Maria through her website, by March 21 to be entered in a drawing. One winner will be selected.
Hawk Rising (reviewed here 6/5/2018). To learn more about Maria, please visit her website: mariagianferrari.com.
FTC Disclosure: I received a complimentary review copy from the publisher. I receive no compensation for reviewing the book.