Little Bird Lost

A Rhyming Picture Story

Children - Preschool
32 Pages
Reviewed on 07/09/2015
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Kate Larkinson is a life-long librarian and newbie grandmother who was inspired to write a multi-award-winning children's book by a young family of swallows that her photographer husband Steve encountered on the way to buy some bread! To find out more or to contact Kate please visit

Her next dream is to find a publisher who is able to produce a good quality hardback or paperback edition of Little Bird Lost at an attractive price, and help her to market the book to a wider audience. In the beginning was the dream!

Kate and Steve live on The Rock in the Mediterranean, were married in California, and travel frequently to the US, UK and Australia to visit family and friends.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite

Little Bird Lost: A Rhyming Picture Story is a children's picture book written by Kate Larkinson with photography by Steve Larkinson. High up in the corner of a building is a nest with baby birds hungrily waiting for their parents to feed them. There should be four babies in that nest, but suddenly one seems to be missing. The other birds are all sitting right there in the front of the nest, but the fourth little one is nowhere to be seen. When their mother comes with food, she wonders about the number of babies she should be feeding and is sure someone's missing, but the three babies assure her that everyone's there. Dad's not falling for their tricks though, and he searches behind them to find the little one so he can get his share of the food.

Kate Larkinson and Steve Larkinson's children's picture book, Little Bird Lost: A Rhyming Picture Story, combines a marvelous photographic series of wildlife pictures with an entertaining and educational story in rhyme. Kate Larkinson's rhymed verse works perfectly with Steve's live-action photographs. You can almost hear those hungry birds cheeping madly as they impatiently wait for food and hold their mouths wide open. There's more than entertainment and fabulous photographs, however, as Kate also introduces numbers and counting, as well as directions into the story. Little Bird Lost provides parents and teachers with an excellent way to continue the lesson by having the new readers count the birds in the nest and point out directions from one panel to the next. Little Bird Lost: A Rhyming Picture Story is most highly recommended.

Jane Finch

Little Bird Lost written by Kate Larkinson and with photographs by Steve Larkinson is the story of a family of birds. There are the parents and four baby birds. Or is it three? Mother bird is sure she has four youngsters, but there are only three gaping mouths when she brings home the food. She is so busy trying to feed her brood that she doesn’t have time to stop and count them. It is only when the father bird arrives that he realises something is wrong. Despite assurances from the little ones that all is well and there really is just the three of them to feed, he discovers what they are trying to hide.

This is a delightful story, simple yet succinct, and told in rhyme by Kate Larkinson. It is also quite refreshing to see accompanying photographs rather than illustrations, which really makes the story seem plausible and real to life. The simplicity of the story is endearing and will appeal to early readers, but would also be delightful for a parent to read to a child and enable the parent to expand on further discussion such as the importance of family and supporting one another. The idea of using photographs will also help the young reader to understand and appreciate the natural world around them rather than look upon the tale as just another children’s story. It would be a great prelude to going outside and looking at the birds in the garden. There is also a short interactive session at the end which makes a nice addition to follow on from the story.

K.C. Finn

Little Bird Lost is a children’s book by writer Kate Larkinson and photographer Steve Larkinson. After discovering and photographing a family of swallows in a bakery in the south of France, the Larkinson duo endeavoured to develop an endearing bedtime story for youngsters, to be read by parents or for first-time readers to practice with. Told in rhyming couplets, the tale recounts the moment when the fourth of the baby birds is pushed out of sight by the other three, and it’s up to the mother and father birds to discover where they’ve hidden him. The overall theme hints at parents loving all their children equally.

For me, Little Bird Lost exemplifies exactly what a picture book should be for the 3-5 year age group. The rhymes by Kate Larkinson are simple, sweet, and just a little repetitive to help children get to know the rhythm of the storytelling, and they leave plenty of room for dutiful parents to put on their best squeak and do impressions of the talking birds. It is also refreshing to see such delightful photographic images being used in a picture book. Steve Larkinson’s excellent clear shots of the goings-on in the nest bring the reality of nature to children in this book, which I find highly original. The educational resources provided in the back of the book to aid first tries at counting are also a thoughtful and useful addition. Overall, Little Bird Lost is a fun, fresh and functional bedtime story that will educate and entertain.

Valerie Rouse

Little Bird Lost is a story book which caters to preschoolers. It is based on four hungry little birds in their nest, looking forward to their next meal. Unfortunately, three of them were very greedy and wanted all of the food. They deliberately created a barricade and blocked their little brother, thereby keeping him at the back of the nest. When Mother Bird flew into the nest to check on her darling birds, she discovered that she could only see three of her babies! She wondered where her other baby could be? Papa Bird saw what the problem was and quickly rescued the hidden bird and brought him forward to feed him. Their loving mother swooped down again, ensuring that all her babies were nourished and comfortable.

Little Bird Lost is an attractive book that encourages learning for little ones. Author Kate Larkinson utilized rhythm and rhyme in the wording. This promotes continuity of each page and engages the attention of the reader. The author’s tactic of placing the words at the top and the bottom of the pages with real photos in the middle was a clever one. This enables the child to zoom in on the changing pictures and absorb the complete story. The bold lettering also helps to draw the reader into the developing plot. Interestingly enough, the theme of good overcoming bad is a pleasant distraction. In addition, I appreciate the skill of the photographer. It is obvious that a lot of effort and time was put into each photograph. Little Bird Lost is a good book for little readers.

Michelle Stanley

Little Bird Lost is a picture book for small children by Kate Larkinson and Steve Larkinson. There should be four baby birds in the nest, but Momma bird only sees three when she returns home to feed them. There should be more, she tells herself. The naughty birds try to convince their mom that she only has three hungry little ones so that they will get more food. Their dad notices something is wrong when he arrives. He wants to know what the trio is hiding behind their backs, but the little birds pretend there is nothing there. Daddy bird does not believe them and makes a fuss. He spots the fourth one just in time as mom brings more food for her greedy little family.

Little Bird Lost is a book for the pre-schoolers age group. Kate Larkinson pens a nice rhyming tale inspired by the cute photos of birds in their nest, taken by Steve Larkinson. These nature photos will give readers the opportunity to see how a family of birds looks in their nest. This short story teaches children simple addition and subtraction as they learn to count the numbers one to four and know the difference between left and right. There is also a website address where teachers and parents can download free educational materials relating to this book and other resources. Little Bird Lost is a simple, but interesting story by Kate Larkinson and Steve Larkinson. Readers will find the lovely cover illustration eye-catching too.

Katelyn Hensel

Steve and Kate Larkinson have created the cutest book for every little animal lover in your family. Little Bird Lost is the story of a lost little bird, missing from its nest. Or is he? It turns out his brothers and sisters were hiding him from sight. It's up to Dad to make them budge up so all of Momma's little babies can get fed.

The words follow the pattern of rhyming on every other page, and had only a few words per page. While I prefer books of this age group to include more words to introduce vocabulary, this book would be great for very young audiences who are only learning their first words. The simplistic style - clean and with no illustrations to distract from the stark, short text and pictures - really helps to distinguish this book from its colorful and bright brothers and sisters of the same genre.

Beautiful full-color photographs take the place of drawings or illustrations in this children's book, providing a perfect segue into realism from the cutesy clutter of silly illustrations. Little Bird Lost is a short but truly realistic story, and you can tell that the Larkinsons expended a lot of effort to make sure that it was cute, realistic, and fun for kids. While there is not much of a plot, the pictures of the baby birds are certainly eye-catching and definitely something that babies and young toddlers would want to inspect more closely. A fun and cute learning tool for the youngsters of the house.

Kate Larkinson

We’re extremely grateful for these awesome reviews! .. thank you all so much!

I feel rather embarrassed at rating my own book, but the comments box won’t seem to allow me to post a comment without doing so. Obviously I’m biased, but looking over the reviews on,, GoodReads and LibraryThing I feel exonerated since the vast majority have been 5-stars, and have included comments such as:

- “Brought a smile to my face.”
- “Even as an adult I actually enjoyed this book!”
- “Great story, beautiful photography throughout.”
- “It is amazing how the text and these actual photos go hand in hand.”
- “Nature captured in it's true form, with the story unfolding at the turn of every page.”
- “It's a very clever book, with a simple but wise message.”
- “This is a really sweet story for kids and helps them to learn about nature.”
- “My daughter loves this book.”
- “A very engaging story with a 'bounce' to it, making it a pleasure to read aloud.”

I can’t tell you how wonderful it is to have finally created this little book and then to hear how much people are enjoying it! Thank you all!

Patricia Reding

Every now and again we experience something that feels a bit akin to magic. Sometimes it is in our discovery of simple things around us. Other times we may happen upon an unusual event--quite by accident. On occasion, those events change our lives. They give us a fresh look at the world at large, and of our place in it. It seems that just that happened one day when Steve Larkinson, camera in hand, came upon squabbling birds in a nest. He raced to capture the best shots and thereafter, presented his picture-story to Kate Larkinson. She, mesmerized, added to his shots, easy, melodic prose that may be enjoyed by both the young and the young-at-heart. Thus, the Literary Classics’ award-winning, Little Bird Lost, was born.

In a story that will show children the importance of family and of each member in one, Kate and Steve Larkinson take children on a real-life adventure in Little Bird Lost. In doing so, they share a little magic with anyone who happens along the way.

Kristen Mott

This is a wonderful rhyming book with full color photos that children of any age will enjoy.

Rosie Russell

"Little Lost Bird" is a sweet story!
Preschoolers will love these adorable photos, with a story line that will give them the giggles. I would highly recommend this book for those that love birds and baby birds. The activity pages at the end of this book, will engage children further.

Melinda Kinsman

I was amazed by the incredible photographs in this beautiful little book! The rhyming couplets that tell the warm story of four bird chicks in a nest are ideal for reading out aloud to preschoolers, and provide just the right degree of humour to keep the adult reader amused too. Little ones are sure to enjoy counting these cute, cheeky chicks, and they will no doubt ask for this sweet, yet humorous, tale to be read out to them repeatedly! Just the right length for a comforting bedtime story.

Karen Jones

Little Bird Lost is an absolute treasure! My grandkids love it, and so do I! The photography is sharp and the story is wonderful!


This was a sweet engaging story. I loved the illustrations being photographs taken by her husband Steve; unique! This story is the perfect bedtime book for first readers. The simple sweet message, captivating images and the lesson of sibling rivalry not stopping parental love. I love how the images themselves tell the story with such depth and emotion.