I like books for kids that not only entertain, but also educate. Wisdom, the Midway Albatross by Darcy Pattison does just that. This 32-page picture book tells the story of an albatross that was banded in 1956 and was last seen in December 2011, 60 years later.
The rhythmic text will keep children interested as they listen to the story of how Wisdom survived through natural predators, earthquakes, thunderstorms, ecological disasters, fisherman’s lines, and the tsunami that hit Japan in March 2011. The illustrations, I believe, are watercolors and beautiful. However, it’s hard to illustrate a book that takes place mostly on water and not get a bit repetitive. The illustrator, Kitty Harvill does a good job by adding a shark here and an egg there, but there is still a lot of blue. I’m not sure how anyone could have done any better, but it might get a bit boring for preschool children. I recommend this book for elementary age and above, which is the age recommended by the publisher. I honestly think even older kids and adults would like the book because of the topic. I really enjoyed it!
For my friends who teach school or homeschool, Wisdom, the Midway Albatross is perfect for a unit study on birds, ecology, weather, and Japan, or for a student who just wants to know more about the albatross.