Robin’s Winter Song

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Suzanne Barton,  Robin’s Winter Song,  Bloomsbury/Allen & Unwin,   1 Nov 2016,  32pp., $14.99 (pbk),  ISBN 9781408859155

The pleasing combination of colour wash and collage detail work so very well in picture books and this illustration style readily inspires classroom media experimentation. Strong on pattern and texture this nature book is prefect for showing the Australian child the changing seasons of our world. Importantly the story also opens up the differences between animals and by inference our own perceptions on life’s events. Winter is something to be avoided by some but to be relished by others. We learn with robin as he flits through his northern hemisphere woodland home, meeting friends who are preparing for the cold. Delicate dabs of torn and cut paper describe tree trunks and seed heads interspersed by sweeps of cool colour and stencilled patterns for snow. Digitally assembled the illustrations weave time passing with beautiful ease, making this a worthy nomination for the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize.  Suitable for 4-9 year olds.

Reviewed by Liz Anelli

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