Working Title Press. Australian, Picture Book. Hardcover RRP $24.95
Reviewer - Sandy Fussell
Warambi is a little bent-wing bat, born into the safety of the nursery cave, surrounded by a colony of family and friends. Her life is comfortable. She grows fur, learns to fly and hunts for moths and beetles with her mother.
One day, a terrible thing happens. “Sunlight and metal burst into the darkness. The pups and their mothers squeaked in terror, whirring and wheeling about.” In the confusion, Warambi is separated from the colony.
Alone and lost, she finds shelter but the strange noises around her new home are frightening. She feels unsafe. Then gentle human hands find her and release her into the night in a place where she can hear the sound of other bats. Warambi finds a new family.
Andrew Plant’s illustrations are a wonderful exploration of colour. The world is blue when Warambi learns to drink water. Inside the colony’s cave is a warm brown environment. The forest is bright green and the night is dark.
This is a story which provides a number of discussion points for early readers – the life cycle of the bat, environmental threats and the need to belong and feel safe. Information about miniopterus australis, the bent-wing bat, is contained inside the front and back cover.
The Reading Stack reviewed Puggle's Problem by Aleesah Darlison in November 2010.