By: Regan W.H. Macaulay
Illustrated by: Wei Lu
Publisher: Mirror Publishing
Publication Date: May 2022
Reviewed by: Holly Connors
Review Date: March 24, 2023
What could have been a sad story about a misunderstood parrot, is instead an uplifting tale about a sweet parrot finding happiness with her "forever flock" in author Regan W.H. Macaulay's children's book, Chloe the Unfeathered Parrot.
Chloe is a beautiful red-masked parakeet. She's not a large bird and her new owner thought that her living requirements were minimal. A small cage set on a table near a decorative plant seemed like the perfect home for the little bird. The man who purchased her meant well, but he traveled a lot and had little time for Chloe. Like so many first-time parrot owners, he thought Chloe had everything she needed.
As time went on, Chloe grew bored and lonely. She had no toys to play with and more importantly, her owner was rarely home, so she had no one to interact with and entertain with her antics. Chloe started screaming and as her frustration grew, she began plucking out her own feathers. Soon, most of the little bird's feathers were gone. Fortunately, Chloe's owner recognized that his bird was unhappy so he contacted a parrot rescue. The Parrot Sanctuary agreed to take Chloe and find her a "forever flock."
The experts at the sanctuary allowed Chloe to settle in while they got to know her. They discovered that the red-masked parakeet was very sweet and liked to play with toys, but she could be loud and wasn't the best "snuggler." Her new owner would need to be experienced with bird ownership and accept this special bird just the way she was - almost featherless but full of love. Would Chloe ever find her special flock?
When I was offered Chloe the Unfeathered Parrot to review, I jumped at the chance. As the mom to five parrots, I know how much attention these little feathered love-bugs require. But I've never read a children's book about the challenges, and rewards, that come with parrot ownership. Author Regan W.H. Macaulay did a fantastic job of presenting the issues around parrot ownership in a sensitive and informative way. We never see the face of Chloe's original owner (he's always shown from the back), and there's no accusatory tone about his poor care of his pet parrot. He simply didn't know and when he realized there was a problem, he did the right thing and contacted a parrot rescue. We also meet several different birds at the sanctuary that are beautifully, and correctly, illustrated - children get a nice education on different parrots. If you're looking for a book for a bird-crazy child, or any child who loves animals and wants to learn more about them, I highly recommend Chloe the Unfeathered Parrot. And yes, Chloe does find her forever flock.
Quill says: Chloe the Unfeathered Parrot is an endearing tale that inspires and teaches young readers about the love parrots are capable of giving while also showing that they are not household decorations, but rather thinking, feeling creatures who deserve loving homes.
For more information on Chloe the Unfeathered Parrot, please visit the author's website at: reganwhmacaulay.com
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