*I received a free copy of this book with thanks to the author, Faye Rogers at Authoright and Clink Street Publishing. The decision to review and my opinions are my own.*
Blurb: Liz Burgess has always held a keen interest in nature, especially small furry mammals!
Long fascinated by their secret activities at home in her own back garden, and the fields surrounding it, she decided to explore this special underground world, and find out more about moles and their other little friends. Liz Burgess lives in South Yorkshire and The Secret Life of Moles is her first book for children.
The Secret Life of Moles (and their friends) is a combination of fact and fiction. It tells the story of Ragwort Teasel, the mole, as he attempts to find a new home for himself and his friends, with the help of various other animal friends, such as Hogknows (a hedgehog), Climbing Fox (a squirrel) and the Wingthings (small birds).
Along the way the author inserts plenty of interesting animal facts and information and makes some good discussion points about how human beings (or Hbeans!) treat different wild animals very differently and why that might be.
Babybows was keen to get in on this one at first, as he is passionate about Peter Rabbit (and fictional animal adventures generally), but he struggled to follow as the writing is aimed at older children (he is 3), and is quite wordy, with black and white sketched nature drawings to illustrate.
Minishine (6) was hooked in though, as from the very beginning she thought of The Animals of Farthing Wood and their search for a new home. The story here is much shorter, simpler and easier to follow, and she enjoyed trying to guess how the plan might work as the story unfolded.
There are a few morals hidden within, about teamwork, co-operation and thinking of others, which Minishine spotted and discussed as we went along (particular greedy Climbing Fox, and the predatory but friendly Owl’s dilemma).
Minishine: It was good how the animals all helped each other and were friends with each other even when they wanted to eat them and eat their food. My best bit was definitely the names though: Wingthings and Hbeans and House Tigers! Soooo funny!
This is one for animal fans and advanced young readers. It made a good bedtime story taken a few chapters a night over 2-3 nights, and would be great as a resource for school topic work on British wildlife.
Our family of Moles – the Teasels – have lots of children, they all live in a safe strip of land next to a field. Up until now there has been plenty of room to dig out new areas for their children, who are growing up and now have children of their own. However they are now getting close to what they understand is called ‘a Road’. All they know is that it is important not to get any closer to ‘the Road’ as strange noisy, fast creatures hurtle along this with no known purpose.
– Liz Burgess, The Secret Life of Moles (and their friends)
You can follow Liz Burgess on Goodreads.
The Secret Life of Moles (and their friends) is available on Amazon right now!