Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Parents' Choice Awards : Books : Non-Fiction
A Nest is Noisy

A Nest is Noisy

Fall 2015 Non-Fiction
Ages: 5 - 8 yrs.
Author: Dianna Aston
Illustrator: Sylvia Long
Publisher: Chronicle Books
ISBN: 9781452127132
Hardcover Price: $16.99

As this beautifully rendered nonfiction picture book explains, a nest is not merely noisy. It can be any size from thirty-six feet in diameter (for the dusky scrubfowl) to the size of a golf ball (for the bee hummingbird). It can be made out of seemingly anything, including (but not limited to) mud, bubbles, living ants, and saliva (who knew?). While bird nests dominate the pages of A Nest Is Noisy, other nest-making animals such as crocodiles, turtles, fish, bees, and prairie dogs also make appearances, creating a panoramic overview of the phenomenon of nests in the animal kingdom.

It's hard to top a well-researched science book for fascinating, bizarre stories-and A Nest is Noisy is a well-researched science book. Hutts organizes the book according to how various nests might be described (some nests can be hot, others muddy, still others neighborly), and juxtaposes quite different animal nests that fit each description, letting readers journey through surprising combinations of animals. The information is well presented for young readers at various reading levels. Younger readers can take in the general descriptions and the pictures of different nests, and older ones can delve into the fascinating explanations that accompany each nest. Sylvia Long's color illustrations are beautifully rendered, and combine naturalistic detail with artistic wonder.

Naomi Lesley   ©2015 Parents' Choice
Naomi Lesley taught middle and high school English for six years. She is currently in a doctoral program at the George Washington University, focusing on American young adult literature.

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