Swallows in the Birdhouse

swallows cover

Illustrated by Robin Brickman.
Published by Millbrook Press, 1996.
Hardcover 1-56294-182-8.



Ages 5-8. Readable text follows a pair of tree swallows from their discovery of a birdhouse built by a young girl and her brother, through nest building and incubation of the eggs, to caring for the babies. Swinburne's lovely descriptive language details each part of the process in clear, simple prose, effectively using context to introduce readers to new vocabulary words. Art enthusiasts will be intrigued by Brickman's unusual super-realistic watercolor illustrations, which have been cut, sculpted, and layered to achieve a wonderful three-dimensional effect. Several supplements appear after the main text. Some add to the book's usefulness as a research tool -- for example, a selection of facts about tree swallows. Others include step-by-step instructions for building a birdhouse and attracting birds. A glossary is also appended." BOOKLIST review

Cut, sculpted, and glued together, watercolors form three-dimensional illustrations portraying the activities of a tree swallow family. The well-written narrative, about the events that follow when a boy and girl decide to put up a birdhouse, contains some well-phrased descriptions that bring this nature study to life. Additional facts are listed at the back of the book, along with instructions on building a birdhouse."THE HORN BOOK review

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