A people-watching yellow warbler finds a friend who shares his passion for noticing things.
Maclear chronicles Warble’s increasing frustration as fog blankets his ice-covered island, a “special place” once full of tourists. He can no longer watch the humans who visit his territory, and worse, his neighbors don’t seem to notice or care about the changes. Sadly, he almost forgets the passion of his earlier life until he spots No. 673, a juvenile “Red-Hooded Spectacled Female,” and she becomes a friend. Together they make origami boats and send them out to sea with messages to others beyond his island. Gradually the fog lifts. Pak’s digitally worked pencil-and-watercolor illustrations support and enhance this simple parable, especially in a wordless center spread showing Warble and the girl, who appears to be Asian, staring at each other through binoculars. Humor is to be found in the extensive human identifications that grace the endpapers and early pages of Warble’s story, a nod to the habits of bird-watchers like the author. Pastel wash represents the fog that “turned everything ghostly.” Their surroundings are gray. But as the fog begins to lift, “Big things. / And tiny things / Shiny red things. / And soft feathery things” reappear. Reaching out lifts both fog and spirits; it brightens days and nights.
A song about sharing that’s sure to lift readers’ spirits as well. (Picture book. 4-8)