'Are you lonely here?' her mother asked. 'Never,' Alice said. 'Not while I am friends with the lyrebird.' Alice has spent her life living on the outskirts of a small town, in a house nestled in bushland. Every other morning, she is visited by a lyrebird. Her bond with this magnificent bird brings her together with her nearest neighbour, Mr Brown, a widower who loves the bush and its treasures as much as she does.
But change is coming: Alice is growing up, and having to think about her future (a future which might mean leaving the bush for her education). Mr Brown is getting older, and less able to look after himself. And as the nearby town grows, their beloved lyrebird and bushland are threatened too. A touching story that will resonate with readers everywhere, stunningly illustrated with woodcuts by acclaimed artist Julian Laffan.
The story follows the quiet life of Alice, who lives on the edge of the forest with her artistic parents and only a lyrebird for friendship.
This changes when Alice ventures onto a neighbouring property where the elderly Mr Brown lives and she discovers that her lyrebird visits them both on alternate days.
It is really the story of an intelligent girl who looks to a future at university, as she is an excellent student, but yearns for the peaceful lifestyle that she currently enjoys. A story of friendship, loss, change and maintaining harmony with nature.
It is beautifully written and eloquent nature story that is ideal for readers 9 - 12 years old.
Reviewed by Rob