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Thursday, 19 April 2012

Entry number 100

A small celebration is in order, methinks.

Here is the first review of my new book, Australian Backyard Naturalist, which will be released in ten days from the date of this post.

The nice people at Needtoreadthis created the review to be found in this link, and which I will quote from below: the clever reader may be able to detect that I'm delighted with the comments.

... a fantastic collection of facts, photos, illustrations and projects, as well as notes from the authors own experiences ... 
The graphic design is varied and interesting with no large chunks of text to discourage reluctant readers. Photos of deceased animals and close ups of fly eyes and maggots, as well as the array of fun facts will keep children turning the pages. The projects are user friendly and include checklists and easy to follow instructions using mostly every day materials.
At 222 pages it is a substantial resource for a classroom or library. It would make a lovely gift, especially for boys. My own sons were quick to grab this from the pile of review books and anything that encourages them to get away from the computer screen and discover nature is a hit with me!
 I think the reviewer worked out what I was trying to do, though given that my grand daughter is the biggest fan of praying mantises that I know, I'm hoping girls will be given copies as well!

That's enough about me, though, because I am aware that many of this blog's readers are from outside Australia, and this book is only being released in Australia at this stage.


  1. I have just ordered a copy for my son (5) and myself to share and must say that I am really looking forward to getting it. I stumbled across this blog a few weeks ago after googling something ridiculous and so glad that I did.

  2. And I'm so glad you did, too. You may deduce from the amount of free stuff I am packing into the blog that I am not highly commercial.

    F'rinstance, I'm not on royalties: the book was commissioned for a fee that has covered my costs for going around having fun, gathering material. I'm happy with that.

    My real interest is in catching kids' minds, which betrays my former life as a science teacher. That is why I am plugging the book, because it is my way of repaying the debt I owe to an earlier generation.

    I have a five-year-old grand-daughter, so I know that most of the ideas in the book are accessible at that age, with adult help.

  3. That's great, really it is. I am currently working on getting some funding for my local area for a jnr. Field naturalist group. I am sure this book and your blog of course is going to be a wealth of inspiration of things to do with them. Although, I'm not quite sure if the parents of the children will be very impressed with them trying to hunt down dead animal bodies for some bone collecting! Haha!

  4. It's all in the packaging. They probably need to be teenagers to have the resolve to do any large animal. My first attempt was a kookaburra that sat on a power-line, reached up to laugh and got zapped by the high tension line above. When my children were young, we used a mouse that had been killed in a trap. I am probably going to filch these thoughts and comments for a later entry, because I suspect most people miss seeing these comments.