'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Friday 5 February 2021

Review: Backyard Magic

Tilly wants to hang inside, but when her mum turns off the television, she has to find some other way to entertain herself.

Drawn outside by the call of a bird, Tilly steps into the wild to discover a world of interesting things. A tree becomes a climbing frame, a stick becomes a broom, a pond becomes a fishing lake and leaves become a skirt.

And while she plays and sings in nature, she searches for the cheeping bird that called her into the wild. 

Backyard Magic is exactly what the title says it is. It explores the secrets and magic of backyards and all the fun that can be found if we go outside and look. 

With stunning illustrations by Harriet Hobday, the story comes to life. Deep blues and greens play on the pages, with glorious splashes of red, orange and pink hues throughout. And while Tilly may not be able to find the bird that sings to her throughout playtime, readers will definitely love spotting the bird with every turn of the page.

The stunning end pages are also a delight to point out to your readers, showing inside toys at the beginning and a colourful splash of nature at the end. It’s a beautiful summary of the book in two gorgeously illustrated pages.

This is a perfect picture book for classrooms and homes alike, encouraging kids to find fun in nature and sparking loads of topics for discussion about the power of make-believe, and perhaps questioning the need for plastic toys when there is so much in nature waiting to be found. 

A charming story about making your own fun and the endless possibilities of outside play, Backyard Magic is brilliant inspiration for kids and a lovely prompt to get outside and explore the world.

Title: Backyard Magic
Author: Wenda Shurety
Illustrator: Harriet Hobday
Publisher: Affirm Press, $19.99  
Publication Date: 27 January 2021
Format: Hard Cover
ISBN: 9781922419187
For ages: 3 - 6
Type: Picture Book