Thursday, October 3, 2013
Book Review - Baba Didi and the Godwits Fly
About the Book
Imagine. You're a bird, only fifteen inches long. You spend half the year on one side of the planet and then you fly to the other side for the rest. Round trip: eighteen thousand miles. On the way there you touch down in many different countries; you're just a passing visitor. And on the way back . . . there is nowhere to stop. Just ocean for seven thousand miles.
A story about two true fantastical flights; that of the godwits around and across the Pacific and a woman's emigration from Croatia to New Zealand.
A young girl and her grandmother, Baba Didi, are on a beach watching the godwits preparing to migrate. Talking about the birds's courageous journey across the Pacific resonates with generations of human migration, from the Maori reaching New Zealand to Baba Didi's journey from Croatia.
Illustrated with warmth and radiance this is an epic story told with charm. A tale of the resilience it takes "just to get there" when the going is rough and the road is long.
A portion of the money from the sale of each book will be donated to UNICEF.
About the Author/Illustrators
Nicola Muir is a teacher, writer, and regular columnist for New Zealand newspaper the Northern Advocate.
Annie Hayward is an abstract and figurative painter. She exhibits widely and has been commissioned for many paintings in New Zealand and internationally.
Helen Clark is the former prime minister of New Zealand and is now head of the United Nations Development Programme.
My Take on the Book
I found it interesting that a godwit is a real bird who inhabits the U.S., Russia, China, Korea, Japan, Australia and New Zealand. They breed in Siberia and Alaska. Wow what travel distances they make in their lifetime.
This is a story written by Nicole Muir based on the godwits. Bada Didi and young Isabella enjoy the seashore and Bada Didi enlightens Isablella about this amazing migratory bird.
Bada Didi helps Isabella to understand that sometimes people need to move from their homeland like the godwits. Her family moved to a new location across the ocean like the birds.
I read this story twice. There was so much about family, changes a family can go through, and finding your place in the world.
It made me think about my own family history and the immigration they made from Europe. If you have family history of immigration, reading this story could open up an avenue for discussion about the movement of your family too. Just like the godwit, people move for their lives and preservation too.
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