By Author / Illustrator
Dan Riskin, Rachel Qiuqi
Greystone Books, Canada
A sweet, fun, and informative picture book about bat echolocation for kids 3-7. Written by a scientist who works with bats in his everyday life!
It's time for Fiona the fruit bat to take her very first flight, but she's scared. How will she fly when she can't see in the dark? Mama just says, "listen." But how will listening help her to see? Then she hears a mysterious sound from deep in her cave. To find out what's making that noise-and to finally fly, Fiona will have to unlock a secret hidden inside herself.
Written by biologist and bestselling author Dan Riskin, and rooted in the real-life biology of short-tailed fruit bats, this adorable story features the fascinating science behind echolocation, including backmatter pages with information on fruit bats from the author. A comforting message to help kids scared of the dark; alongside Fiona, they'll learn there's nothing to be scared of! The story is also a celebration of self-confidence and independence, showing readers the amazing things they can accomplish all on their own.
Accompanied by delightful illustrations from Rachel Qiuqi, Fiona the Fruit Bat is a touching tale about overcoming the fear of new experiences and finding the courage to listen to your own voice.
It isn't very often one comes across such a factually accurate story about bats. The expert knowledge and passion of Dan Riskin for bats shines throughout his text. For our young readers, the emotional aspects of Fiona's struggles to take her first flight, are an excellent talking point in PSHE. What a great book to use at the beginning of term for those children who are felling nervous, or trying something new for the first time.
Fiona the Fruit Bat can also be used as a stimulus for science work, looking at animal babies and/or life cycles with our youngest children. The detailed backmatter pages give information about echolocation and short-tailed fruit bats for the reader of this book. There is even an echolocation experiment to try!
Rachel Qiuqi has included some beautiful illustrations to explain the emotions of Fiona the bat she comes to terms with her echolocation skills. They will really help children empathise with the character. An interesting read for children aged 4+ and one for any school library to have in their nature/science section.
40 pages / Reviewed by Sharon Porter, teacher
Suggested Reading Age 3+