Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Beauty and the Beak - by Deborah Lee Rose & Janie Veltkamp (True story of how science & human compassion rescued a Bald Eagle) [Review & Giveaway]

Ages 5-13

ISBN: 978-1-943978-28-1
I recently reviewed a book from Cornell Lab’s children’s book imprint PERSNICKETY PRESS and was very impressed with the great information about the wildlife (think primarily birds) featured in the book and also about the telling of the story itself. Now they have brought forth the story of "Beauty" the Bald Eagle who lost his beak from a poacher's shot and faced dying because he could no longer exist without it.

But this story has a delightfully happy ending and it is due to the empathy and skill of folks who used the technology of the 3-D printer to create a temporary prosthetic beak for Beauty ensuring a chance for survival.
Showing Beauty's injured beak
The text is written in easy to understand language that gives a background story that is a supposition based on, it is assumed, studies about the early life and development of the Bald Eagle. Then it resolves into the sad happening of when the eagle is injured and his desperate attempt at survival, being found and rescued, and then the development of the life-saving prosthetic. 

Beautifully done photographs of eagles in the wild as well as those of the process of caring for Beauty tell this heart wrenching story and will help young readers learn of compassion, empathy, care and use of their skills to help wounded animals. There is also extensive back story information from the Cornell Lab that is fully factual and great for further study and learning about eagles and endangered species.

This is a great book for helping young minds to understand the importance of wildlife conservation and it also brings out the modern ability of using a consortium of people with various skills to enable the preservation or survival of individual critters. The combined technological skills for the coding of the 3-D printer, the dental surgical skills for attaching the prosthesis, and the design efforts to create a life-like beak for Beauty is truly astonishing and quite an encouragement for future generations.

Dentists use their skills to fit new beak to Beauty.
As August is the 10th anniversary of the Bald Eagle’s removal from the Endangered and Threatened Species List, the Persnickety Press release of Beauty and the Beak is particularly appropriate. The true story of Beauty the Bald Eagle is especially inspiring. "Beauty" made international news after she was shot in the beak, survived until rescued, and received a pioneering 3D-printed prosthetic beak. 

Replica of the 3-D printed beak. 
About the book: Beauty was born high above the Alaskan river, and quickly grew to be big and strong like her parents – soaring over lakes and streams to catch fish in her sharp beak. One day, while perched on a branch in the Alaskan territory where she was born, Beauty was shot by a poacher, which shattered her beak and scratched her eye. Without her beak, Beauty could not eat, drink, or groom her feathers to keep them in top flying shape, and would soon starve. Fortunately, she was rescued and came under the care of raptor biologist Janie Veltkamp, who was determined to find a way to help Beauty. After hundreds of hours of design and testing, Janie, along with an engineer and a dentist, used a computer and 3D printer to make and surgically attach a new beak for Beauty.

Dozens of photographs bring this uplifting tale to life, from baby eaglets to Beauty’s beak surgery, while the text teaches all about eagles: how they grow, what they eat, where they live, and more. Beauty’s story and the success of efforts to protect Bald Eagles, demonstrate the importance of wildlife conservation – as well as the advances of science and technology to help both humans and animals that need prosthetics. Named to the California Teachers Association’s CALIFORNIA READS Teacher Recommended Books List, Beauty and the Beak makes these concepts accessible to young readers, and encourages them to grow into environmentally- conscious and responsible adults. Extensive back matter from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, the world-renowned scientific authority on birds, features additional resources on how kids can help protect eagles and other birds of prey, more information about Bald Eagles and the Endangered Species Act, and a note from Janie Veltkamp on humanity’s responsibility to nature.

About the Authors: Deborah Lee Rose is an internationally published, award-winning author of many beloved children’s books. Jimmy the Joey: The True Story of an Amazing Koala Rescue is a Reading is Fundamental/Macy’s Multicultural Collection title and Notable Social Studies Trade Book for Students K-12. Into the A, B, Sea was named to the New York Public Library’s 100 Books to Read and Share. Deborah helped create and directed communications for the ALA/AASL award-winning national STEM education website Howtosmile.org, and helped created STEM activity apps for Lawrence Hall of Science which have been downloaded more than one million times. She also served as Director of Communications for Lindsay Wildlife Experience, which includes one of the first wildlife rehabilitation hospitals established in the U.S. Deborah lives in Walnut Creek, CA, and speaks at book events, conferences, schools and libraries across the country. Visit her website at deborahleerose.com.

Jane Veltkamp is a raptor biologist and rehabilitator, wildlife educator, trained nurse, and master falconer. She led the team who developed Beauty the bald eagle’s prosthetic beak and has lifetime care of Beauty. Jane is founder and executive director of Birds of Prey Northwest, in Idaho, a raptor center which educates the public about raptor conservation, including through live raptor programs, and has provided medical treatment and rehabilitation to thousands of injured birds of prey to return them to the wild. She spent ten years of her career reintroducing ospreys and peregrine falcons to regions where they had disappeared from their habitat in South Dakota and Indiana. She rescues and cares for bald eagles, including Beauty, by permit from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Jane lives near Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, and is also the eagle expert for the Coeur d'Alene Tribe's Native American Aviaries. Visit her website at birdsofpreynorthwest.org.

About the Persnickety Press: Persnickety Press is the sister imprint of the Cornell Lab Publishing Group. Persnickety publishes a broad range of books for children and young adults, both fiction and nonfiction, from picture books through teen titles. Our books focus on empowerment, showing young people that what they do matters, what they care about is worthy of their attention and dedication, and even as children, they can make a real difference.
Begins June 14
ENDS July 6 at 12:02 a.m. EDT
Open to USA addresses only.
DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary copy from MMPublicity Group on behalf of Persnickety Press and the authors to facilitate this review. Opinions are my own and are freely given.


  1. My hubby rescued an adorable kitty. It constantly was looking in our window, but if we went outside, it ran. We had two cats, but my hubby couldn't bear to see the little one dying from starvation. He ended up taking the screen out of the window so he could catch it and bring it inside. It eventually ended up being a three year olds beautiful gray pet! :)

  2. My wife and I adopted Artie from a local rescue group. He was turned into a high kill shelter and had one hour to live. A volunteer from the rescue group spotted him and pulled him from the shelter. They posted him on Petfinder.com and my wife saw him. We applied and was approved to be his new family. We are so blessed to have adopted him.

  3. Two friends of mine also rescued an eagle that had been poisoned in the forest in British Columbia. I was with them at the time and they knew exactly what to do. They brought it back to an animal rescue society that they belong to and after it was treated and fully recovered they were allowed to be part of the re-release back into the wild

  4. It is not an animal but a catapilla. I found it on the curb where cars park. I gently nudged it under a bush. Next summer a butterfly went right up to me as if to thank me for saving it.

  5. What a fascinating story!!! Thanks so much for linking this up at Booknificent Thursday on Mommynificent.com this week!

  6. I posted the wrong URL for the share on 6/22. It should be https://www.facebook.com/FrogSlop/posts/1516226921766753?pnref=story

  7. Our daughter rescued both a cat and an older dog who owners abandoned them. They now have their forever homes with her family.

    allibrary (at) aol (dot) com


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