Hawks Kettle, Puffins Wheel: And Other Poems of Birds in Flight

Susan Vande Griek, illus. by Mark Hoffmann. Kids Can, $16.99 (36p) ISBN 978-1-77138-995-2
“Hawks kettle, crows mob, puffins wheel, gannets dive.” Centered on the peculiar and charming verbs describing specific patterns and types of bird flight, this book pairs poetry and prose to explore the aerial behaviors of 12 species. Short, serviceable incantatory verses attempt to evoke a particular movement (“Skeining cross the autumn sky/ a moving V, a vocal flight/ a skein of geese”) while a concise paragraph explains why the birds do what they do: “The skein allows the birds to save energy on their journey, since air coming off each bird’s wings gives lift to the bird behind.” Hoffman’s of-the-moment, stylized illustrations employ rich colors—icy blues, saturated yellows, frosted greens—to capture plumage and landscape in playful compositions that use a variety of perspectives to create a sense of motion. The book closes with supplementary information on the birds featured and a winsome spread illustrating sample feathers from each species. Ages 6–9. (Sept.)
Reviewed on : 06/13/2019
Release date: 09/03/2019
Genre: Children's
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