Eating or reading the wrong thing

Ive posted on ABBA today about the Flower Fairy books, and how if my niece had read them she probably would have been spared a nasty experience after eating some poisonous arum or lords-and-ladies berries (they were green, and she thought they were peas. At least she knew that peas do actually grow somewhere, and are not born frozen in a supermarket; it’s just a pity she didn’t know that they grow in pods).

It’s got me thinking about some of the classics of children’s fiction I grew up on, like Richard Adams’ Watership Down or The Sword in the Stone by TH White, where absolutely accurate, close observation of the natural world informs and indeed forms an imaginative narrative.

I can’t think of any contemporary children’s fiction that is based so comprehensively and accurately around observation of nature – which seems odd, considering our preoccupation with threats to the environment, Can you?

The lords-and-ladies fairy, from Flower Fairies of the Autumn by Cicely Mary Barker

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