OZ LIT REVIEW #9 – Five Little Owls

Five Little Owls. by Mark Carthew – New Frontier Publishing. Picture Book. Hardback rrp $24.95.

Five Little Owls is wonderful fun. Not many books can claim to be truly interactive but this is one of the rare few that succeed.

The rhyming text tells the story of five little owls who, one by one, fly off to play hide and seek in the forest. As each leaves to join the game, a beautifully presented double page illustration encourages young readers to find the concealed animals and play too. Mini Goss is one of Australia’s foremost illustrators and her drawings of mice, rabbits, frogs, bats and owls are both educational and entertaining.

The repetition of phrases, such as the owls calling Tu-whit Tu-whoo, encourages young listeners to share telling the story. They will love the rhyming rhythm and the predictability of counting down from four to zero.

My son enjoyed searching for the hidden animals over and over again. Even after he knew where every one was. Many ‘find-it’ style books are too difficult for younger readers, but this one is perfectly pitched for three to six year olds.

Hide and seek. As in the previous sentence “fly off to play hide and seek”. If you still think it needs clarification then replace with ‘and to play the game with the owls.” Either way is ok with me.

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