Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Violet Mackerel's Natural Habitat

Violet Mackerel's Natural Habitat by Anna Branford, illustrated by Sarah Davis (Walker Books Australia)
HB RRP $19.95
ISBN 9781921529191
Reviewed by Vicki Stanton

The delightful Violet Mackerel is back with her newest theory: the Theory of Helping Small Things. However, Violet finds that helping small things is not so easy when the ladybird Small Gloria dies in the home Violet has made her. Violet discovers all about natural habitats and Small Gloria provides the key to repairing Violet's relationship with her sister Nicola who is 'going through a stage'.

Beautifully written and pitched perfectly for younger readers, this third Violet book is a heart-warming exploration of family dynamics and of a child working out the world around her and how she and others fit into it. Branford also provides advice on how best to keep a ladybird in a jar including that it is best not to keep them for long.

Sarah Davis' ink and pencil illustrations grace every page bringing Violet and her family to life. Davis has managed to capture the very essence of Violet's personality. In particular, I loved the illustration of Violet searching for Small Gloria in the rain.

Violet Mackerel's Natural Habitat is the most gorgeous book and a must-have for all book shelves.

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