Ranger Hamza’s Eco Quest

publication date: May 31, 2024
author/source: Christine Mayle

Ranger Hamza's Eco QuestHamza may be best known by grown-ups as the winner of Strictly Come Dancing but in his TV programme for children on BBC CBeebies he shares his passion for the outdoors, wildlife, the environment and conservation. This passion is continued in his book, Ranger Hamza’s Eco Quest, published by Ivy Kids Planet-Friendly Books.

The book arrived just in time as our youngest grandson, (aged three, “nearly four, Nana” as he keeps telling me) was sent home from nursery with chickenpox. Luckily he only had a temperature for 24 hours and the few spots were scattered mainly across his chest and back. However he loves being outside and active! Mercifully the book, Ranger Hamza’S Eco Quest, came to the my rescue. 

Our grandson has always been fascinated by ‘Mini Beasts’ and the outdoors, so Ranger Hamza’S Eco Quest naturally (excuse the pun) struck a cord with him. A lovely, intriguing combination of facts, information and practical activities. The book takes children on a eco trail, stopping off to explore nature and the environment along the way. Tasks are creative, accessible for families with or without a garden, and perfectly pitched for a range of children’s ages. Most of the items needed for the activities are collectable from outside, inexpensive and easily to hand.

So after a very wet Thursday morning, spent at Nana’s house reading Ranger Hamza’S Eco Quest,  the weather improved, and we went outside into the garden, with wellies and raincoat on, for a slug, worm and snail hunt. As you can imagine the conditions for this activity were perfect. We found lots of slugs, worms and snails (plus lots of other insects) hidden amongst the wet plants, under stones and twigs.

The language in the book is very child friendly and developmental with some very easy to read rhyming verse. The charming, simple illustrations weave a story themselves throughout the book, imaginatively complementing the story being told by Hamza. 

The pages in Ranger Hamza’S Eco Quest involving growing an oak tree from an acorn struck a very personal note for me as nearly 40 years ago my mother, by then herself a grandmother to our elder daughter, helped plant an acorn which is now a fully grown oak tree on the border of our garden.

Adding to the theme of the book, Ivy Kids make their books from recycled paper and print in the UK therefore making it "a planet-friendly book" too. 

Both myself and our grandson loved the Ranger Hamza’S Eco Quest and will continue to explore the activities throughout the year. Highly recommended.

PWT rating: ♥♥♥♥♥

Ranger Hamza’s Eco Quest, published by Ivy Kids Planet-Friendly Books and illustrated by Kate Kronrief, is available from bookshops and online.