On the Wing


Book Information

Reader Personality Type
Candlewick 2014
Language Arts Curriculum

Open this book to luscious paintings that spotlight the beauty of birds in the wild.  From the Macaw with its rainbow to the cardinals pair set against a background of wintry birch trees, the birds are brought close to our eye.  Each bird is matched with its own unique poem.  Some are short and simple, "The Puffin is unique... especially its beak."  

They range from the birds we see in our own backyards to birds we may never have heard of...the Bowerbird? 

At the same time we're savoring the wonder of the birds, there is a sense of playfulness in many of the poems that invite every reader to open to the delight of our natural world.

978-0763653248   32 pages   Ages  4-8

In this carefully planned book, readers simultaneously learn key facts about a variety of birds, absorb different forms of poetry and revel in beautiful artwork. ... The gouache artwork perfectly matches the varying tones and forms of the poetry, which ranges from the humorous one-sentence poem for the macaw to literary accolades for the albatross to philosophizing about the Andean condor’s dark secrets. ... The power of good poetry glides along through the final three pages, which note that the bald eagle doesn’t know the term "bird of prey / though he circles like a prayer // on the rising columns / of the shining, / sun-warmed air." From the graceful cranes flying across its wraparound cover to the single feather on the title page to the soaring eagle at the end, this book astounds.
—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

Elliott adds a celebration of birds to his collection of lighthearted animal poetry. ... Stadtlander paints the birds with meticulous care, framing them against majestic, muted backgrounds whose overcast skies lend a somber feel.
—Publishers Weekly

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