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Birdsongs    by Betsy Franco & Steve Jenkins order for
by Betsy Franco
Order:  USA  Can
Margaret K. McElderry, 2007 (2007)
* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

In Birdsongs, Betsy Franco takes us through a full day of avian observation - from sunrise to sunset - looking at birds in their natural habitat, and listening to their songs. This lovely picture book is enhanced by Steve Jenkins' gorgeous illustrations of birds in nature.

Just after the 'rising sun turns the sky from black to gray to pink to blue', the red-capped woodpecker's 'tat tat tat' can be heard as he 'raps a tap dance with his beak'. Then come the coos of mourning doves, the chips of sparrows, the white gull's warning eeyah, the dee of the chickadee (as the tabby cat watches), the duck's qua, the crow's caw, the nesting robin's 'tut tut tut', the thrasher's chuck, and (my favorite of all), the hovering hummingbird's high-voiced tzik.

The sun sets as the mockingbird (echoed by young readers) copies all the songs heard during this melodic day. Birdsongs will arouse kids' curiosity, encouraging them to look, listen, and wonder about birds' daily conversations, and what they're saying to each other.

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