Tatchell has created a skillful blend of education and entertainment on every page. Readers will learn intriguing facts about little-known animals, such as the cuscus bear’s love of cocoa plants and macaque’s preference for fresh fruit, but the fun doesn’t stop there. Tatchell’s appealing characters evoke the bond of friendship as they rush to help Tarsie discover happiness, and their unique advice lands him magical results. Tatchell’s lilting verses work to mimic the natural rhythm of Tarsie’s world, as when he playfully sings “I am a friendly tarsier/who munches flying things./I snatch them from mid-air because/I like to crunch their wings.”
Ivan Sulima’s illustrations are deep, harmonious reflections of survival in the wild. In the night-time scenes particularly, Sulima’s cool palettes conjure the mystery of jungle life, and his bold graphics will quickly grab readers’ attention. True to the story’s conservationist bent, Tatchell includes fast facts at the end about the featured animals as well as how-to instructions for sketching them. Any fan of endangered species—or animal lovers in general—will cherish this uplifting tale.
Takeaway: A young tarsier learns to sing his true love’s tune with the help of his endangered friends.
Great for fans of: Thyra Heder’s The Bear Report, Rosanne Parry’s A Whale of the Wild.
Design and typography: A
Marketing copy: A