Migration: incredible animal journeys

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Mike Unwin (text),  Jenni Desmond (illus.), Migration: incredible animal journeys, Bloomsbury Australia, 1 June 2018, 48pp.,  $22.99 (hbk),  ISBN: 9781408889916

This attractive information book describes 20 different animal species from around the world and their amazing migrations. For some species, the journey is an annual event to reach plentiful food or a suitable place to breed. For others, it’s a once-in-a-lifetime occurrence.

Author Mike Unwin is a UK Travel Writer of the Year. He draws readers into each fascinating narrative through lively, evocative writing that appeals to the reader’s imagination.
Imagine being a baby swallow in autumn…

A satisfying range of animals is represented, including mammals (e.g. humpback whale, caribou), birds (e.g. arctic tern, barn swallow), fish (e.g. southern pilchard, great white shark), invertebrates (e.g. monarch butterfly, Christmas Island red crab) and reptiles (e.g. green turtle).

There is also an interesting range of migrations from all around the globe; some are relatively short, while others span from pole to pole. The most amazing journey to my mind belongs to the monarch butterfly, which takes four generations to complete the migration from Mexico to Canada and back.

Illustrator Jenni Desmond is a New York Times Best Illustrated Children’s Books award winner. Her illustrations are beautiful immersive double-page spreads, which do their part in drawing readers into the drama entailed in migrations to great effect.

Back matter includes a map of the world showing all the migrations described in the book, along with a small section of fast facts and information about what readers can do to help preserve animal species.

This is a lovely book that would make a great addition to any school library or classroom.

Teacher’s Notes are available to download from the Bloomsbury website.

Reviewed by Julie Murphy

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