Otis the Owl Review 

Synopsis from Arbordale Publishing:
In beautifully detailed photographs, Mary Holland captures the first few months of a baby barred owl’s life. The huge eyes and fluffy feathers will steal the hearts of readers as they learn how barred owl parents ready their young owlets for the big world outside the nest. Follow along as Otis learns to eat, fights with his sister, and prepares for flight.

This nonfiction picture book with a cuddle factor includes a 4-page For Creative Minds section in the back of the book and a 30-page cross-curricular Teaching Activity Guide online. Otis the Owl is vetted by experts and designed to encourage parental engagement. Its extensive back matter helps teachers with time-saving lesson ideas, provides extensions for science, math, and social studies units, and uses inquiry-based learning to help build critical thinking skills in young readers. The Spanish translation supports ELL and dual-language programs. The enhanced ebook reads aloud in both English and Spanish with word highlighting and audio speed control to promote oral language skills, fluency, pronunciation, text engagement, and reading comprehension.

About: Otis the Owl is a children’s nonfiction picture book written and illustrated by Mary Holland. It was recently released for sale on 2/10/17 by Arbordale Publishing, 32 pages. This book is intended for kids ages 4-8. Arbordale Publishing’s mission is to inspire the love of reading and improve young children’s science and math skills through picture books. These books will captivate your kids’ minds on your lap, at bedtime, or in the classroom. Please see below for more info about the author.

My Experience:  I started reading Otis the Owl on 2/15/17 as a bedtime story for my 5 year-old son and we finished it that same night. This book is awesome! It’s packed with knowledge from the owl’s birth to when they learn to fly. In this book, readers will follow the birth of Otis and his family. His parents found a hole in a tree and decided to use it for nesting. This hole is called a cavity (I didn’t know that!). Otis and his sister was born and raised in the cavity, pictured above. Owls being nocturnal, meaning they hunt at night and sleep during the day is not usually this way for parents because Otis’ parents will have to hunt both day and night in order to provide enough food for Otis and his sister.

This book is truly ideal for kids because I love that the author use big words in the story and at the same time provide the definitions. I’m so proud that my son knows the meaning of nocturnal before I read out that part. He learned that at school already. This book also mentioned that owls are predators hunting for preys and its definitions. I also love that the author mentioned about Otis having fights with his sister and ask the readers if we have fights with our siblings too. When Otis lean over the cavity, the author ask readers what we think Otis will do. The extra bonus is the info at the end of the book. My son and I learned about owl pellets. My son was super excited to learn of this new information that he called his dad over to tell him about it. We also love a page with pictures of different animals that Owls eats. I truly recommend this book for all readers!

Pro: definitions, photos, about owls, interactive,

Con: none

I rate it 5 stars!

Grab yourself a copy here: Arbordale Publishing or Book Depository

About the Author:


Mary Holland is a naturalist, nature photographer, columnist, and award-winning author with a lifelong passion for natural history. After graduating from the University of Michigan’s School of Natural Resources, Mary worked as a naturalist at the Museum of the Hudson Highlands in New York state, directed the state-wide Environmental Learning for the Future program for the Vermont Institute of Natural Science, worked as a resource naturalist for the Massachusetts Audubon Society, and designed and presented her own “Knee-High Nature Programs” for libraries and elementary schools throughout Vermont and New Hampshire. Her other children’s books with Arbordale include Ferdinand Fox’s First Summer (NSTA / CBC Most Outstanding Science Trade Book and Moonbeam Children’s Book Award), The Beavers’ Busy Year, Animal Eyes, Animal Mouths (NSTA / CBC Most Outstanding Science Trade Book), and Animal Legs. Mary’s book Naturally Curious: a Photographic Field Guide and Month-by-Month Journey Through the Fields, Woods and Marshes of New England won the 2011 National Outdoor Book Award for the Nature Guidebook category. Mary lives in Vermont with her lab, Emma. Visit Mary’s blog at naturallycuriouswithmaryholland.wordpress.com. (Info obtained from Arbordale Publishing Website).

More Information about Arbordale Publishing:

Phone: 877-243-3457 | Fax: 843-216-3457 | Email: info@arbordalepublishing.com | Web: http://www.arbordalepublishing.com | Hardcover, Paperback, Spanish Paperback, and downloadable ebooks are available.

***Disclaimer: Many thanks to Arbordale Publishing for the opportunity to read and review. Please be assured that my opinions are honest.


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