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Kakapo Dance by Helen Taylor


All the birds in the forest are singing and dancing. All except Kākāpō. He can't coo and glide like kererū, chirp and twirl like fantail, or whistle and waddle like whio. But the other birds are having so much fun, he can't help but join them, in his own unique way.


Kakapo Dance is a playful read-along story about Aotearoa's unique bird song and movement.


Award-winning author Helen Taylor has done a marvellous job at capturing the bird's special characteristics.


The story is a beautiful book to read aloud with young children. It's repetitive structure makes it easy to pick up and it's packed with important literacy concepts. Onomatopoeia, alliteration and similes abound in the story, which makes it so fun to read.


The only downside to the book was the lack of tohutō (macrons) on the bird's names. The technology to add these important markers of language exist, so it is a little disappointing they haven't been added. Using the correct spelling ensures our younger generation are pronouncing our remarkable and special bird's names correctly.


Taylor is very talented. As well as writing the story, she illustrated the book and each page is an absolute visual feast. Each bird is given the chance to shine, although ultimately kākāpō does steal the show. As well as glorious renditions of each bird, Taylor portrays our native flora, with kōwhai, puriri and raupō amongst the pages.

This thick and sturdy board book is a lovely addition to every Kiwi kid's bookshelf. It's a wonderful introduction to our native birds that perfectly captures their uniqueness and will delight even the littlest of readers.


Reviewer: Rebekah Fraser

Picture Puffin, RRP $15.99

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