Andrew Kelly (text) and Dean A. Jones (illustrator), The Accidental Penguin Hotel, Wild Dog, September 2021, 32 pp., RRP $24.99 (hbk), ISBN 9781742036281
This is a fascinating account of how feisty penguins have settled on the breakwater at St Kilda, Melbourne. It started with one male who could not find a place on the island where all the other fairy penguins usually nested. Soon a female joined him in his new home and then many more mates arrived.
Humans now surf and swim around them and wonderfully, the penguins and humans manage to live in harmony around the breakwater. There is a brief account of the habitat and life of a penguin appended.
The illustrations are beautiful. Rich greens and blues of sea and sky, yellows of sand, and the black and cream of the penguins themselves, with the palms and skyscrapers of St Kilda in the background. Scientifically and historically accurate this is a picture book for all ages.
Reviewed by Stella Lees