I’d like to introduce you to my new book, Audubon, John James’ Birds and Words, illustrated by Laura Love. This book is the product of many years. In fact, the first illustration Laura completed for this book was 10 years ago when her 10 year-old daughter was about one years old. That’s how long this book has been in the making. Several things got in the way: other projects, my husband’s retirement, a move, and lots and lots of stuff. But here it finally is and we are very proud of this book. It has gone through several versions while I searched for a publisher, one of which was a much longer book on Audubon’s life. Then it morphed into a picture book, and finally landed where it did half way in the middle – about 10,000 words, 4th grade reading level, and one hundred and seven pages. While Laura’s illustrations are spectacular, I was very happy to be able to include several carefully chosen Audubon bird illustrations with the book, so we could show how and why he illustrated as he did. With my background in art, that’s what I was aiming for. In the end, it turned out better than I imagined, and I imagined quite a lot!
It also arrived exactly when it was supposed to. For Audubon also went through many things children are facing today. His school closed (due to war, not illness) and he had to home school, just like today. Then as a teen he was faced with a very serious illness, yellow fever, that sickened him and many others around the world, and caused a lot of people to die. Audubon himself was sick for weeks. Finally, as an adult, when his business was doing well, and he was able to find the time to draw birds, a huge earthquake struck the Mississippi River and ruined the U.S. economy, which ruined his business, so this book speaks to us on many levels today. Through it all, he prevailed and illustrated not just one nature book, but four.
I am pleased and honored to offer this book to you on Amazon as an e-book and in paperback.