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MOONBIRD; A Year on the Wind with the Great Survivor B95

Author: Phillip Hoose

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Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux,

Material: hard cover

Summary: B95 is a rufa red knot; a migrating shorebird about the size of a robin. He wears an orange band that help scientists study the species’ migration pattern, as well as try to figure out why the species is dying. During the North American Winter, B95 lives in Rio Grande, Tierra Del Fuego, Argentina. In February, B95 and his mates get restless. It is time to make the flight North to the Arctic breeding grounds. The book is filled with images and maps, as well as biographies of key researchers studying the rufa red knot. This YA nonfiction book is part bird guide, part scientific paper, and incredibly beautiful.

Type of Reading: independent reading

Recommended Age: read together: 9 to 12; read yourself: 12 and Up

Interest Level: 10 and Up

Reading Level: 7.9

Young Reader Reaction: Review pending.

Adult Reader Reaction: Love the concept and was eager to keep reading … until I got about halfway through. Although I liked the breakaways to read the biographies of the scientists, by the fourth chapter the material had gotten too tedious. I think it will appeal more to adults than kids.

Pros: Lots of photography and maps help readers understand the big journey of this tiny little bird.

Cons: Nothing specific.

Borrow or Buy: Borrow. This is not nonfiction teens / young adults would read for fun. It has a textbook or research paper feel to it.

If You Liked This Book, Try: THE TELL-TALE BRAIN; A Neuroscientist's Quest for What Makes Us Human   PROWLING THE SEAS: EXPLORING THE HIDDEN WORLD OF OCEAN PREDATORS   BIRD, BUTTERFLY, EEL

Educational Themes: This is nonfiction for teens with multiple layers. It is an exceptional illustration of how scientists set hypotheses,study a topic of interest [in this case the decline of the rufa red knot], and document their findings.

It is also an invaluable geography lesson, as well as a detailed study on the rufa subspecies. Given the level of detail and documentation, it would be an excellent resource for studying climate, physical, and sociological change on the migration route.

Notes: The Reading Tub read a library copy of this book as part of the 2012 Children's and Young Adult Bloggers Literary Award (Cybils) process. This review is not intended to represent the opinions of the Cybils.

Literary Categories: Nonfiction - animals, young adult, geography, science

Date(s) Reviewed: September 2014

Other Reviews: See Critics' Reviews and reader feedback at amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com.




                 

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