There is a lot to like in this book although I think there are a few snags in it too.
Personally I like the illustrations, most of them, very much, but I wonder how well they will work with young people.
And the poetry doesn’t scan perfectly in all cases.
The links between the plight of the Hen Harrier in the UK and the global extinction of some other species is a bit of a stretch but is a good way to get these wider messages across to a young audience.
Are mink ‘natural’ predators of Hen Harriers? Not in this country they aren’t. This is an example of one of a few places where a very slight change in wording would have been a good idea.
The problem of illegal persecution of this bird is certainly mentioned in an uncompromising way but it is wrapped up, cleverly, in a roller-coaster of a sky dance at the fairground.
There is a crossword, some ideas for drawing Hen Harriers, and quite a lot of information about Hen Harriers, other birds of prey and extinct birds, all presented in an attractive manner.
Iolo Williams provides a foreword to the book. Here is a short extract ‘The fact that these protected birds are still persecuted in the 21st century is a national disgrace, even worse is the fact that there is little political will to bring it to an end‘. Well said Iolo, diolch yn fawr iawn.