Cooper’s Book Report

This month’s book is Pete the Parakeet by Sharon Gordon.p1Pete is a happy parakeet. He has a swing and a bell and a cage that looks like a blimp. But suddenly Pete disappears. Where could he be?p2It turns out Pete was bringing his friend (a cat!) over to play at his house. Cooper thought this was a cute little book, but does not recommend that her budgie friends play with cats.

Cooper’s Book Report

This month’s book is The Conditions of Love by Dale M. Kushner.conditionsDespite the big blue budgie on the cover, this book was not about a budgie! The Conditions of Love is the story of Eunice, a young girl struggling to find love as she journeys through life.

There is a budgie in the book, Mr. Puccini, a green and yellow bird (unlike the blue budgie on the cover) who teaches Mern, Eunice’s self-centered mother, “simple happiness”. When Mr. Puccini escapes through an open window Mern is devastated (as one would be). Though Mr. Puccini only appears on a few pages, Cooper thought he was the star of this beautifully written, poignant story.

Cooper’s Book Report

This month’s book is Blimey! I’m a Budgie! by Tony Bradman.b1Hoping to avoid an encounter with the school bully, Adam is relieved when he is magically transformed into a budgie. He enjoys being able to fly and hanging out with his new bird friends. But being a budgie isn’t as easy as he had thought. There are bullies in the bird world, too! After Adam learns how to confront his fears, he returns to the human world with strength and confidence.b2Cooper loved this book. Her favorite part was when Adam and his friends outwitted Konan the Kestrel. Cooper thinks everyone should be able to turn into a budgie at least once in their life. Many problems can be solved from a budgie’s view point!

Cooper’s Book Report

This month’s book is Flyaway: How a Wild Bird Rehabber Sought Adventure and Found Her Wings by Suzie Gilbert.

flyawayIn Flyaway, Suzie Gilbert, a bird rehabilitator, shares her experiences rescuing wild birds who have been injured or abandoned. Starting small, Gilbert’s home operation, Flyaway Inc. soon grows. From songbirds to herons to raptors, we see the time and dedication it takes to nurse the injured back to health. With heart and humor she depicts the joys and sorrows that are part of caring for these wild creatures.

Cooper loved this book. She thought Gilbert did an excellent job portraying the intelligence and personalities of each bird. Cooper laughed at the birds’ antics and teared up when, in spite of all Gilbert’s efforts, a bird couldn’t pull through. Cooper admires the effort and sacrifice that rehabbers put in to save their avian friends, and cannot recommend this book highly enough.

Cooper’s Book Report

b1This month’s book is Bluebird by Bob Staake.

b2Told solely through pictures, this book is about the friendship between a lonely boy and a bluebird.

A bluebird notices the isolation of a young boy at school. Befriending him, the two spend the afternoon together. But their fun ends when they encounter a group of bullies in the park. Sadly, the bluebird loses its life in defending the boy. The story has an uplifting end, though, when a colorful flock of birds lifts the boy and the spirit of the bluebird into the clouds to say goodbye.

Cooper enjoyed this book (which was named one of the best books of 2013 by Publisher’s Weekly, Barnes and Noble and American Bookseller’s Association). She loved that the hero of the book was a bluebird, but was sad when it sacrificed its life. She hopes that the boy was worth it.

Cooper’s Book Report

bb1This month’s book is Bird Brains: The Intelligence of Crows, Ravens, Magpies and Jays by Candace Savage.

bb2Bird Brains examines the intelligence of the corvid family. Research on the birds (nest building, raising young, food gathering, mating and play) shows powers of abstraction, memory, and creativity that put them on par with many mammals, even higher primates.

This was nothing new to Cooper, who knows firsthand how brilliant birds can be. She enjoyed this book – particularly the amazing photos (taken by some of the world’s best wildlife photographers).

It’s National Comic Book Day!

comic1One of Cooper’s favorite comic books is Strange Adventures which includes the story “Prisoner of the Parakeets”.

comic2“Imprisoned by  flock of mammoth birds on an isolated island in the South Pacific, an atomic scientist has to pit his wits against super-intelligent parakeets that threaten to dominate all life on earth.”

Unfortunately, John Walden defeats the budgies.

Or does he??

Cooper’s Book Report

pp1This month’s book is Parakeet Peter by Rebecca K. Sprinkle (illustrated by Dorothy Grider).

pp2 Timmy is given a parakeet by his Aunt Susan (coolest Aunt ever). He names the little blue budgie Peter and learns how to take care of him. Peter loves to play with his toys, take baths and fly about the house. Timmy hopes to teach Peter how to say, “Happy birthday!”. After weeks of no success, Peter finally does say “Happy birthday!”. And he says it on Timmy’s actual birthday – because budgies are awesome that way.

Cooper enjoyed this book. Her favorite part was when Peter would push his ball off the table for Timmy to pick up over and over again. She was a little concerned that the family would let Peter fly free around lit candles, though. Overall, Cooper thought the story and illustrations were charming and would recommend Parakeet Peter to all her friends.

Cooper’s Book Report

ppp1This month’s book is Princess Penelope’s Parrot by Helen Lester (illustrated by Lynn Munsinger).

ppp2Princess Penelope is a spoiled and nasty little princess. She receives a parrot for her birthday and proceeds to treat it awfully. The parrot has its revenge when a neighboring prince comes to visit, and all ends well. Cooper enjoyed this book (even though she thought that “Princess Penelope’s Parakeet” would have been a more interesting story).  The illustrations were fun, and she was glad to see the princess get her comeuppance.

Cooper’s Book Report

bk1This month’s book is The Bird King: An Artist’s Notebook by Shaun Tan.

bk2My sister introduced me to the work of Shaun Tan, an Australian writer and illustrator. He’s even won an Academy Award for the animated version of his book The Lost Thing.

The Bird King is a collection of illustrations, sketches and ideas by the artist. Cooper loved the whimsical and imaginative artwork. Her favorite was the budgie on the cover and the budgie on page 50. This sketch became an illustration in the book Tales From Outer Suburbia.

budgie(Can you spot the budgie?)

stanShaun Tan (with Diego and Snowball) is also a budgie owner. His budgie Eddie helped to inspire one of my favorite stories “Eric”.