Owls are captivating.  They are not only fascinating to study, but are also an excellent subject of fiction, both for little kids and big kids.  As promised, here is a very brief list of great owl reads.  These are just a  few my guys and I have recently enjoyed.


Owl Moon The very prolific Jane Yolen is the author of this almost lyrical book about a little girl and her father crunching through the snowy woods at night in search of an owl.  “Sometimes there is an owl, and sometimes there isn’t,” as her brothers tell her, but of course, Ms. Yolen does not disappoint her readers.  There is, indeed, an owl, a great horned owl to be exact.  Animals are naturally hidden in nearly every page, and the author’s beautiful imagery creates a familiar sense throughout the book.  The realistic illustrations combined with the obviously reverent awe she feels for nature makes this book a true friend in nurturing a sense of wonder in our little ones.

Little Hoot by Amy Krouse Rosenthal, illustrated by Jean Corace – In muted matte illustrations an adorable little owl in a hoodie complains throughout the book that he has to go to bed late.  Owls go to bed “late, late, late.”  “Rules of the roost,” Father owl reminds him.  G giggles every time at this flip-flopped story line about going to bed.  His favorite line?  A grumbling Little Hoot  vows, “When I grow up, I will let my kids go to bed as early as they want!”  If you like this book, the author-illustrator team has also given us Little Pea and Little Oink.

Owl Babies by Martin Waddell, illustrated by Patrick Benson-  Gorgeous illustrations of fluffy owlets snuggling in the nest are accompanied by a text reassuring any little one that when Mama is gone, she also comes back.


There’s an Owl in the Shower by Jean Craighead George – Here is a story for animal lovers.  The logging industry versus the spotted owls.  Truth be told, A read this one on his own and I have not yet managed to read it.  I have included it here, because I have read the author’s captivating My Side of the Mountain, and because, well, A still references it, even though he first read it almost a year ago.

Owls in the Family by Farley Mowat  Classic Canadian children’s author Farley Mowat wrote a book once upon a time when boys (and girls) lived outdoors and enjoyed hours of unscheduled free time.  This humorous and fact-filled book tells the story of three friends who find two great horned owls in need of rescuing.

Wabi: A Hero’s Tale by Joseph Bruchac  Drawing heavily on Native American legends, Wabi is a coming-of-age story about a great horned owl who chooses to become human to be with the girl he loves.  Before he can be near her, however, he must first win her trust and affection, as well as defeat the mythically-based creatures of the Valley of the Monsters.  Bruchac does a fabulous job of weaving in Native American folklore, and depicting scenes distinctly from an owl’s perspective.

May your family enjoy the bounty of the season.   Don’t forget to love every red, yellow, or orange leaf before they are gone for the year.  If you don’t live with the autumn colors, what are your enjoyable signs of fall?   Curling up together and sharing a book is a wonderful fall activity.  Whether through books, in nature centers, or out in their natural habitat, again, happy owling!

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