Caldecott Medal winners tend to hold their appeal!

by Robert McCloskey - Penguin Books 1989, republished 2016
ages 2 to 8 years / heartwarmers, s.o.s.e.

Make Way for Ducklings is the story of Mr. & Mrs. Mallard and their quest to find a place to nest and then to raise their family of ducklings. 

Their quest to find a home takes them around well-known Boston parks and buildings and they finally settle in a place near a bridge over the Charles River. 

A friendly police officer feeds them peanuts and eventually their family of ducklings hatch. 

After teaching the ducklings all they need to know, Mrs. Mallard sets off with her brood to meet Mr Mallard in the public garden. 

It’s a perilous journey, but their friendly police officer stops the traffic and calls ahead to his police friends and together they ensure that Mrs. Mallard and her ducklings make it safely to the public gardens.

It’s a lovely, comfort-reading sort of tale that has cult status in Boston, where the duck statues in the public gardens never need polishing because children sit on them so often they naturally keep up the sheen!

The illustrations in the book are simple line drawings in sepia tones, they're beautiful in their detail and simplicity. Mr. and Mrs. Mallard and their ducklings are quite realistically portrayed while the humans are more stylised – making it clear that this is really a tale about the ducks and the humans are secondary.

There are lots of lessons here – kindness to animals (and by extension to anyone less fortunate), respect for nature, the beauty of cities, the joy of family etc.

You can buy Make Way for Ducklings via these direct links: Amazon - Book Depository - Booktopia