Crow Not Crow
Co-written by Jane Yolen and Adam Stemple
Illustrated by Elizabeth Dulemba
36 pages – ages 6+
Published by The Cornell Lab Publishing Group on August 28, 2018
Synopsis from Publisher- “New York Times bestselling children’s author, Jane Yolen, and her son Adam Stemple have teamed up to write a gentle tale of a father introducing his daughter to the joys of bird watching using the “Crow, not Crow” method for distinguishing birds. Elizabeth Dulemba’s delightfully warm illustrations bring the story to life.”
What I Thought- This is a really sweet and endearing take on an activity that many probably have not truly considered. I mean, we’ve all seen birds, but I know I haven’t given an extreme look at them except for in 9th grade Biology class. The book teaches kids (and adults!) the “Crow, not Crow” method – where you look at birds and only decide whether they are a crow or not a crow, noting the differences between the mystery bird and a crow. Yolen and Stemple create a story of a young girl going out with her dad to learn how to watch birds, showing the loving bond between the two as the girl learns a family hobby. Dulemba fills the book with beautiful full-page spreads, showing us all the wonder in the nature that is found, clearly showing the warmth and love that the father and the daughter share.
I loved that the birds are depicted accurately, with information and photos in the back of the book. There are also QR codes that you can use to find the bird calls and more information.
This book is truly a masterpiece and I think families will love to read this book and look for birds together.
I give this book five out of five bookworms!
I have the wonderful opportunity to share a guest post from Jane Yolen with you all today!
Take it away Ms. Yolen!
CROW NOT CROW is a family story. But the following three crow poems are all my own. Enjoy.
Crows in a Field: A Haiku
Two crows in a field.
I know what that means—do you?
Five Winters with Birds
Like a drop of errant red paint
cardinal blots the snow.
A shiver of robins
dotting the landscape
Poster child: starving sparrow
Under a bend of azalea.
A solitary crow punctuates
snow’s sentence, perhaps
a comma, certainly a comment.
A vee of geese, erratic letters
telling of change.
If Nature itself is divided, why be shocked
by human fights over the many words
for sand, for love, for snow,
or the proper name of God?
The Wisdom of Birds
“Animals are often smarter than people, so it is they who should object to anthropomorphism.—John Hornstein
The wise owl, or so he’s been dubbed
by some anthropomorphic admirer,
looks down from his tree
where he’s been contemplating
the square root of shrew.
Giving a small cough, he throws up
a bit of wisdom, shaped exactly
like a pellet, stuffed full of bones
Not exactly Schopenhauer,
remarks a nearby crow,
though he knows how to satisfy himself.
The mob flies off laughing,
whether at the owl,
now considering his flight feathers
and the phenomenon of mice,
no one can say, sarcasm, not wisdom,
being the forte of crows.
All poems ©2018 Jane Yolen, all rights reserved.
Categories: Age 6-9