Friday, February 07, 2020

A Birds’ Eye View of Iceland

Puffins Encounter Fire & Ice: The Puffin Explorers Series Book III

Author and Photographer: Ra Anderson
Publisher: My Favorite Books Publishing Company, Kingston, GA, 2019

In book one of the series, our two young puffling friends (Arni and Birta) were just about to set out to sea when they stopped to help two baby lambs. In book two, Arni’s parents are anxious that their little puffin will make it out to sea by night fall for his life’s journey. Still not sure of their puffling’s whereabouts, his parents continue their search in this final volume, book III, of the series.
Arni and his friend Birta continue to explore while at the same time trying to find two lost sheep and help them get back home.  Meanwhile Arni’s parents fly all over Iceland to find Arni – all before night fall when all pufflings must head out to sea.  And this time for their longest journey.
For all four puffins, author and photographer Ra Anderson, with the help of an Icelandic ‘Faery’ is able to provide her young and older readers yet more of a most beautiful travelogue of Iceland. The flights of the puffins take us through beautiful and famous lagoons, beaches, glaciers, volcanoes, and much more.  At the turn of every page, Anderson not only provides us with some of her own beautiful photography, but also facts about the origin, history, and current status of all the sights we visit together.
Did Arni and Birta find the two lambs they were trying to help? If not, what happened to them? And did the two young pufflings get to sea in time? You’ll need to find out for yourself.
In the meantime, you’ll learn some very interesting things about the Old Norse language and the Vikings that spoke it. You’ll find out where the title of Book III came from. You’ll discover some differences and similarities between puffins and penguins. You’ll learn about the 606 different species of moss that grow as large mats on lava rocks and could be as much as 18 inches thick. You’ll also learn why you never hear about the Icelandic earthquakes. You’ll visit one of the 120 lighthouses in the country and learn how many are still in operation. And much more.
Like the two previous volumes, this one too is highly recommended for young inquisitive minds that have a passion for animals, birds, and nature. As an adult, I too didn’t want to miss this last in the series to see how things worked out for Arni and Birta. And I wasn’t disappointed.
One more thing -- when I go to Iceland, I will do all I can to get a taste of their famous “Hot Springs Bread” or Rúgbrauõ. What is that you say?  The puffins found out. Get the book.
Ken B. Godevenos, President, Accord Resolutions Services Inc., Toronto, Ontario, February 07, 2019,

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