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  • Knowing the Name of a Bird Book

Knowing the Name of a Bird Book

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This inquisitive, ornithological ode celebrates a love of birds—no matter what we call them and why.

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Review from the Minneapolis Star Tribune

"Poet Jane Yolen explores the difference between what we call birds, and what birds are and do. A bird’s name, she points out, is not the same thing as an actual bird. A bird’s name is not the same thing as 'the exact blue of its neck.' A bird’s name 'tells you little about the build of its nest.' Jori van der Linde’s poster-like illustrations, worked in pen and Photoshop, are both realistic and stylized."

—Laurie Hertzel, Star Tribune, July 17, 2020

Review from Kirkus

"What’s in a name? The characteristics of a bird cannot be conveyed by the names we give them ... According to Yolen, birds are given both scientific and popular names, such as robin, hawk, peacock, or swan, but neither name captures anything about what the bird is really like. The individuality of a bird, such as its color, or more tactile qualities ... are not conveyed by the name we give it. A bird’s name can’t convey its movement in space or the drama of a peacock’s outspread tail or the nature of its flight or even if it flies at all."

Kirkus Reviews, June 16, 2020

About the Author

Jane Yolen is the Caldecott Award-winning author of hundreds of books for children, including What to Do with a Box and Sing a Season Song, both published by Creative Editions. The Educational Book & Media Association honored her significant literary contributions with its 2018 Jeremiah Ludington Award. Canadian artist Jori van der Linde is a graduate of Emily Carr University of Art and Design. Her previous Creative Editions projects include Counting on Birds and Phrases of the Moon: Lunar Poems.