Posted on March 27th, 2015 by pajamapress
Two Pajama Press books have been nominated for the 205–16 Hackmatack Children’s Choice Award.
Skydiver: Saving the Fastest Bird in the World, a picture book illustratedby Celia Godkin, chronicles the successful efforts of scientists to reintroduce peregrine falcons to their former territories in North America after the population was depleted by the effects of DDT.
A Brush Full of Colour: The World of Ted Harrison, a picture book biography written by Margriet Ruurs and Katherine Gibson, recounts the life of Canada’s iconic artist of the Yukon. Filled with full-colour examples of Ted Harrison’s art from throughout his career, the book also features an introduction written by the artist himself.
The Hackmatack Award is Atlantic Canada’s reading program for students in grades four to six. Participants will read a shortlist of ten fiction books and ten non-fiction books in either English or French, then vote for their favourites. You can view the full list at the Hackmatack Award website.
Posted on July 2nd, 2014 by pajamapress
“K-Gr 2–A look at the peregrine falcon, whose population was almost decimated as a result of the extensive use of the pesticide DDT. In clear and engaging language, Godkin frames this informative book around the story of a pair of falcons and their offspring. The dramatic mating display of the male and the courtship dance between the two are beautifully illustrated. Occasionally, the birds are anthropomorphized (for instance, the female “joyfully” rises up to join her mate in flight). The author discusses the idea of the food chain, explaining that while DDT didn’t kill falcons outright, it caused their eggs to become so brittle that most broke before hatching. She explains how environmentalists were successful in having DDT banned but says that brittle eggs remain a problem many years later and that continuing human intervention is necessary to help restore the population. Godkin follows the fate of four eggs taken from the pair of falcons introduced in the beginning pages, and readers learn how some hatchlings are taken to sanctuaries to be incubated. Of the original four eggs, one hatchling is taken to a sanctuary, two survive after being moved from a cliffside nesting platform to a ledge on a city skyscraper, and the last falls victim to a great horned owl. An author’s note provides further resources and information on both peregrine falcons, and pesticide use.”
–Nancy Silverrod, San Francisco Public Library
Posted on June 17th, 2014 by pajamapress
“In Skydiver, Celia Godkin tells the stories of peregrine falcons, the severe decline in their population caused by the pesticide DDT, and the human volunteers whose intervention is necessary if the population is to recover. Godkin follows the lives of both the wild and incubated birds, as well as providing background material on the fight to ban DDT.
…An accomplished artist, Godkin also gives us pictures of this extraordinarily swift bird swooping and playing in a sunlight sky, as well as endearing depictions of the awkward chicks with their fuzzy white down and the gawky juveniles with their mixture of adult plumage and baby fluff. It is these illustrations — as well as Godkin’s advice to “Look up!” — that will really inform and excite children about these beautiful birds.”
Click here to read the full review.
Posted on May 16th, 2014 by pajamapress
“Choosing the peregrine falcon as the subject of her latest book is a wise, if not brilliant, choice. There is something about raptors that is particularly fascinating to the young. Perhaps it is their speed or their power or what appears to us as brutality that holds us in awe of these birds of prey.
Godkin’s writing is clear and concise and well-researched…..The author/illustrator’s dramatic full-colour paintings illuminate each page….Skydiver: Saving the Fastest Bird in the World is well worth a place on the shelves of the wildlife section in an elementary school library. Highly Recommended.”
Click here to read the full review.