Owls Are Cool

Owls Are Cool
Timothy Knapman and Jason Cockroft
Walker Books

Meet Oscar, a burrowing owl and narrator of this story; he’s a cool creature he tells us, because of his inability to fly. He has no desire to emulate the flying owl species that soar and swoop in the sky. Instead he much prefers to spend his time burrowing and running and ZOOOOOOOOMing around the grassy terrain.

One day he issues a challenge to a watching snowy owl that comes swooping down to watch him strut his stuff. As expected the challenge is accepted and Oscar watches unimpressed at what he calls “showing off”. 

But then disaster: the snowy owl smashes right into a tree and crash lands nearby, injuring both wings. The creature introduces himself as Reggie and Oscar then has a change of heart. Offering his burrow as a temporary haven to Reggie, he discovers that the need for friendship is what really matters.

This is a sweet story showing how friendship can transcend differences and being different is ‘cool’.
I’ve never come across a burrowing owl in the wild; I don’t think they are resident in the UK and it was good to meet this one in Timothy’s tale. Jason Cockcroft captures both the long-legged strigine and the snowy one beautifully in his gently humorous scenes of the countryside shown from a variety of viewpoints.

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