In a casual, friendly manner, Collard talks about woodpeckers; the different types, their behaviors, effect on the environment, and current state of vulnerability. He makes mention of pop culture, like saying that you can't mistake a woodpecker's drumming unless you're absorbed in Shark Week or Minecraft. He talks about his own experiences with these fascinating birds - he and his son took the photos in the US and abroad. The photographs are occasionally blurry, but generally of a high, professional standard. The layout of the book is a large, picture book style with a lot of white space around the edge of the light font.
Back matter includes an author's note, encouraging readers to revisit the author's earlier book, a glossary, index, and photo bloopers.
The author is correct that there aren't many books for kids on woodpeckers and certainly nothing approaching narrative nonfiction, not since Hoose's Race to save the Lord God Bird in 2014. This accessible title combines humor and the author's friendly, down-to-earth text to create an informative, attractive volume on birds that should be better-known.
Verdict: A strong addition to middle grade nonfiction on animals; recommended.
ISBN: 9780984446094; Published May 2018 by Bucking Horse Books; Borrowed from another library in my consortium