Review: Mama Dug a Little Den by Jennifer Ward

Mama Dug a Little Den by Jennifer Ward

Mama Dug a Little Den by Jennifer Ward, illustrated by Steve Jenkins (9781481480376)

In this companion book to Mama Built a Little Nest, the story explores the many animals who build dens to protect their babies. The book offers rhyming couplets as the main part of the story but each animal also has facts included on the page. These facts include how long the babies stay with their mothers, how the dens function and how the animals are fed while in the den. There are mammals, toads, lizards, spiders and many more on these pages, each with a unique den of their own and interesting reasons for having them.

Ward has selected a broad range of animals to highlight here. Her poems are jaunty and clever, the rhymes never feeling forced. The facts she shares are brief, pertinent and fascinating, just what you need in a picture book format. As always, Jenkins’ art is exceptional. He captures small details and interesting habitats with his cut paper collage that introduces texture to the illustrations as well.

Curl up in your own den to share this with your own baby animal. Appropriate for ages 3-5.

Reviewed from copy provided by Beach Lane Books.

Governor General Literary Awards Finalists

The finalists for the 2018 Governor General Literary Awards have been announced. The Canada Council for the Arts is responsible for administering the awards which are given in seven categories in English and French. Here are the finalists in the Young People’s categories in English:


Ebb and Flow The Journey of Little Charlie

Ebb and Flow by Heather Smith

The Journey of Little Charlie by Christopher Paul Curtis

Learning to Breathe Sweep: The Story of a Girl and Her Monster

Learning to Breathe by Janice Lynn Mather

Sweep by Jonathan Auxier

Winnie's Great War

Winnie’s Great War by Lindsay Mattick and Josh Greenhut, illustrated by Sophie Blackall



Africville At the Pond

Africville by Shauntay Grant, illustrations by Eva Campbell

At the Pond by Werner Zimmermann

37683443 36373562

Go Show the World by Wab Kinew, illustrated by Joe Morse

Ocean Meets Sky by The Fan Brothers

They Say Blue

They Say Blue by Jillian Tamaki