King of the Sky: Greetings and Pigeons

Welcome to the library blog, I hope to share my enthusiasm for a few books that strike me as particularly special. I’ll start with King Of The Sky, a book so beautiful I’m sharing it with adults too.

King Of The Sky


By Nicola Davies, Illustrated By Laura Carlin,

Published by Walker Books, 2017

This book is an uplifting story of displaced boy (maybe he’s refugee?) becoming captivated with the world of racing pigeons.

Mr Evans face was crumpled and he could hardly walk, but when his birds flew he smiled like Springtime.

He helps Mr Evans train a particular pigeon so that it will take part in a special race: all the way back from Rome. As I’ll explain in a moment I already knew a version of this story, but even so as I read I was drawn into the world, the writing is beautiful, the art-work just perfect for the story, with lots of detail to study, and of course the ending is triumphant. I haven’t yet shared the book with Harry, he lives in America, but he’s coming to see us soon, I can’t wait to read it with him.

The story is based on a real-life pigeon race. The bird now known as the King Of Rome  broke long-distance records by flying from Rome to Derby. Dave Sudbury’s song about this has been recorded by many people, not least June Tabor. I’d strongly recommend seeking out a recording of June’s version of the song.


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