Children Book Review : The Lost Leadbeater’s Possums/ Tim Faulkner-Illustrator Elin Matilda

On the weekend we were ducking into the shops and as usual Otis asked if he could go into “the space shop” aka Australia  Geographic Store. I reluctantly said ok not because the store isn’t wonderful ( it’s actually one of our faves!!) but because I know how long our visits there can extend for.

As we were having a wander through I was taking a moment to look through the children books. This story The Lost Leadbeater’s Possums caught my eye ($14.95). Over the past few days we have been reading it and the kids and myself have been really loving it.

It recounts a tale of how the Leadbeater’s possums were once thriving  in the southern parts of Victoria in Australia and all of a sudden they was a rapid decline in numbers until they were gone. They were disappearing because man had cut down the trees in which homed them, altered the particular habitat in which these small creatures need in order to survive. How bushfires were devastating their habitats and they could no longer survive. A theme is continuously repeated ” this is why the possums cry at night when we’re asleep“. It’s a strongly emotive phrase that young minds and hearts are struck by.

I found this book brought up discussions about, how are these things are happening? why are animals becoming extinct? what can we do to create change and respect the space we co exist in? Then we find out that the Leadbeater’s Possums after being declared extinct are re – enlisted and there is hope.

A few things I really liked about this book was the story was clear, emotive and honest. At the end few pages there are facts about the Leadbeater’s life span, reproduction, food, habitat, ect and photographs of these cute little marsupials. I must also make a special mention of the gorgeous Illustrations throughout this book that capture and enhance the narrative of the story so well. I love the contemporary nature of them and  the use of colour palette that is so distinctive with the mood of each page.

All in all I would totally recommend this book for anyone with early /mid primary aged children. It opened up a dialogue with myself and my son about animals becoming extinct and what positive role we can play in protecting our wildlife here in Australia and abroad. I feel very strong about fostering a love for the earth and all creatures in which we share this amazing space with and this book was great tool on that journey.

let me know if you read it would love to know your thoughts too… Enjoy xx

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