Have You Heard the Nesting Bird?


In this nonfiction picture book for young readers, we learn just why the mother nesting bird stays quiet and still while sitting on her eggs. Shh. . . .


Woodpecker calls from a tree, “cuk-cuk-cuk.” Starling sings, “whistle-ee-wee.” But have you heard the nesting bird?


In this book, we hear all the different bird calls in counterpoint to the pervasive quiet of a mama bird waiting for her eggs to hatch. Fun and informative back matter takes the shape of an interview so that readers learn more right from the bird’s bill. Ken Pak’s lively illustrations, paired with Rita Gray’s words, render a visual and sonorous picture book to be enjoyed by young naturalists.

“The pleasing text is well constructed, with rhythm and rhyme altered in different types of stanzas and distinctive birdsongs included in the verse. . . . A beautifully crafted, informative picture book.”
Booklist, starred review

“This charming and unusual nature story contributes something new to the overstuffed field of bird-related picture books. . . . As welcome as the robin in springtime.”
Kirkus, starred review

“The restraint of the artwork dovetails nicely with the story’s themes: caretaking. . . and observation. . . A fine book about watching living things in the wild, and it also serves as a beginning birders’ guide, identifying the features and cries of common backyard birds.”
Publishers Weekly

“[A] lovely introduction to common neighborhood birds.”
School Library Journal


Creative Process by Kenard Pak

Kenard: I first make random doodles in my sketchbook and work with a favorite.  My process is organic, and I rarely follow through an original idea.



Kenard: In Photoshop I design the birds, and whatever basic ideas come my way.  I originally wanted a branch in this spread.



Kenard: Here’s the near final spread with the children.  The kids were introduced half way after the initial dummy book was prepared!



For more about the creative process from Kenard Pak, check out HMH Kids on Tumblr!

Q&A with Rita Gray



Q&A with Kenard Pak


Have You Heard the Nesting Bird? is a featured book in our Picture Book Parade! Keep checking back to discover more unique, charming picture books with special features such as author Q&As, illustrator sketches, and more.