Extra! Extra! Read All About It! Puffling Patrol by Ted and Betsy Lewin (with a giveaway!)

Good Morning, everyone!  I hope you all had excellent weekends!  In case you’re dragging a little at the thought of Monday-after-the-Olympics-are-over, I have a special treat for you 🙂

It just so happens that today is my mom’s birthday!  To celebrate, we shall have cake!  Of course I can’t use pictures from google images anymore, and I don’t have a photo of the actual cake at this writing because I haven’t baked it yet, so you will have to use your imaginations just a little…

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doesn’t this look like a cake?

Please help yourself to as much as you like – it can be any flavor you want 🙂

Not only do I have cake for you, but a few weeks ago, maybe because of Perfect Picture Books, I got an email from Lee & Low Books.  Would I like to review a new book from Ted and Betsy Lewin?  But of course I would!  I’m afraid I’m not as familiar with Ted’s work, although of course I’ve heard of him, but I think we all know Click, Clack, Moo: Cows That Type illustrated by Betsy! 🙂

So here’s a little peek at their new book, which came out this spring but is of special interest now because of the topic – the rescue of pufflings as they head for the sea each August.

used with kind permission of publisher

Puffling Patrol
Written & Illustrated by: Ted & Betsy Lewin
Published by: Lee & Low Books, March 2012
56 pages
Recommended for: grades 2-4/ages 7-10
Theme/Topic: puffling rescue off the coast of Iceland, nature, caring for wild animals in need, kindness
Opening:  “It is the end of August.  Soon the adult puffins will be gone to spend the winter in the cold northern seas.  The pufflings in the dark burrows will then be on their own.”

In April, hundreds of thousands of puffins flock to the Westman Islands off the coast of Iceland.  They nest in the cliffs, digging burrows into the soil where they lay their eggs, then hatch and raise their chicks, called pufflings.  By August, the babies are ready to leave the burrows and head out to sea, but some of them become confused by the lights of the town and land in the streets instead.  Puffins are too chunky to take off without wind and space, so if the babies land in town they can’t get back to sea by themselves – they need help.  The children of the Puffling Patrol search the streets, finding the frightened babies, placing them in cardboard boxes in their homes overnight, and returning them to the ocean in the morning.

baby puffling
image used by permission of publisher

This story is about Ted and Betsy’s experience visiting the Westman Islands and witnessing the puffling patrol firsthand.

rescued pufflings safe in a cardboard box
image used by permission of publisher

The book is full of interesting information about the birds, their habitat, and the annual patrol that keeps the pufflings safe.  Some of the paintings are whimsical, very reminiscent of the style of Click Clack Moo.  Others are beautiful watercolors showing the wild, rocky terrain and the wide sky, so lovely you can almost feel the wind.  The book is heavy on text, so perhaps not the best choice for very young listeners or those with limited attention spans, but excellent for readers interested in animals and the natural world.  It would be a nice addition to elementary school study of migration, wild birds, animal rescue, or nature, and an interesting read for children interested in these subjects.  In addition to the story, there is a nice introduction which explains where and why the story takes place, and several pages of facts at the end about Atlantic Puffins, the volcano of 1973 which formed part of the island, and puffins today, along with a bibliography, a glossary, and a pronunciation guide.  I think this book would make a lovely addition to any school or home library.

image used by permission of publisher

Lee & Low was kind enough to send me a hardcover review copy, which, now that I’ve reviewed I have permission to give away to one lucky reader!  If you would like it, please leave a comment below saying why you’re interested or who you’d like it for.  Random.org will be responsible for picking a winner Thursday evening (August 16) so please leave your comment before then!

Enjoy your cake 🙂 and tune in Wednesday for Would You Read It – the July pitch pick and Sharron with the 53rd pitch as we swing into year 2!  And now, I’m off to Pennsylvania with a banjo on my knee 🙂

34 thoughts on “Extra! Extra! Read All About It! Puffling Patrol by Ted and Betsy Lewin (with a giveaway!)

  1. Joanna Marple says:

    This is a bit sneaky, but I really want to win a hardcopy. I am also going to do a review for them, but being overseas, I received an electronic copy and I think this is a truly delightful book. The funny thing was, the day I received the request from Lee and Low, I had an email from a new friend in Brooklyn, who had had dinner with Ted and Betsy and my friend asked me if I knew them. I do agree that there is a Clack Clack Moo feel to the illustrations. Thank you for your lovely review, Susanna!

  2. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    I'll put you in the running 🙂 It is an interesting book, isn't it? I kind of wondered if they had both had a hand in illustrating because some of the illustrations look very Click Clack Moo and others have a completely different feel! But it came out well 🙂 When are you doing your review?

  3. Joanna Marple says:

    I think you are right about both being involved in the illustration! It's a bit awkward at the moment with not exactly knowing travel arrangements and if/when I will have internet access, but I think next week, Wednesday or Friday. I think I will use it to kick off the blog again after my hiatus.

  4. thefeatherednest says:

    I had heard of the Puffling patrol before. I think if I were fortunate enough to win this book I would donate it to the public school our daughter attended as a child (after I read it myself of course lol). However, since I just recently was the lucky winner of 'Puffer's Surprise' I will ask you to remove my name from this draw.

  5. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    Sounds good! 🙂

    Joanna Marple wrote, in response to Susanna Leonard Hill:

    I think you are right about both being involved in the illustration! It's a bit awkward at the moment with not exactly knowing travel arrangements and if/when I will have internet access, but I think next week, Wednesday or Friday. I think I will use it to kick off the blog again after my hiatus.

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  6. Jarmila V. Del Boccio says:

    Happy Birthday to your Mom, Susanna…and thanks for the cake!
    I would love a copy of “Puffling Patrol” because I am writing two PBs about birds (peacocks and storks), and want to read similar ones to gain another perspective.

    Enjoy Pennsylvania…another road trip??

  7. Pamela_courtney says:

    Happy birthday, Mom! Your daughter is serving my favorite cake! Each slice you cut, can be different. My first piece will be chocolate. My second will have a cream cheese filling with strawberries, my third…

    This book sounds like it would make a great read for the after-schoolers in my lit program. I call them my, Reluctants, privately of course. After I've presented it to them, I'd leave the book with the school. I'm anxious to see the illustrations. I love watercolor illustrations.

  8. Diana Murray says:

    Happy Birthday to your mom! This sounds like a book my 7yo daughter would love. She loves books about animals. Puffins are such beautiful birds. I saw some wild ones when I was in Alaska.

  9. Vivian Kirkfield says:

    Looks like a lovely book…I'd love a copy for my grandson, Jeremy, who appears in most of my photos of kids. 🙂 Wonderful review, Susanna…and the cake was delish…with no calories…now that is the best news of all. 🙂 Happy B-day to your momma. 🙂

  10. Pennny Klostermann says:

    Thanks for the great review! I have found the book at my local library, so don't put me in the drawing. It sounds very interesting.

    I thought you only went to Louisiana with that banjo! But…hey! I'm singin' it….it's workin' out!

  11. Damon Dean says:

    Okay…waiting on my last ICL lesson in which I selected non-fiction, and having thought I'd never like non-fiction, I am finding it is grabbing me. I kinda like it. The old social-studies teacher in me still, I suppose. But this looks like a great book, and I recently heard an interview with a Lee & Low editor, and so I'd LOVE to win this book!
    Oh, Susanna, my name please in the hat, for I'd love to have my name drawn out and find that I win that! – Damon Dean

  12. Romelle Broas says:

    Happy birthday to your mom! That is nice of you to give out a party favor-Puffling Patrol?

    I would love to give my 9-year-old son this book. He is very much a boy who loves baseball, action movies, and all things cool. But he does have a soft spot for cuddly things. He loves animals and learning about them (especially since he can't have a real pet since his older brother is allergic to dogs, cats, rabbits). He does not have a book on puffins yet. It is a unique bird and would make a great gift!

  13. Robyn Campbell says:

    Late here. What a super bodacious review!!! A HUGE HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO Susanna's mommy. I hope she got lots of cake and lots of presents. Er, your cake is lookin' puny. Sorry. BUT I NEED CAKE!!!!!!!!!!! (The uh, diet, yanno?) I would give this to my Liam. He needs a puffin story. If we don't win, we'll still read it though. I love the sound of it.

  14. Stacy S. Jensen says:

    Sounds like a great book. I'm sure Enzo would enjoy reading it. We really, really need to send you cake, cupcake and treat photos, so you can properly (with permission) share with us. 🙂

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