An Alphabet of Dinosaurs

An Alphabet of Dinosaurs

by Peter Dodson
     
 

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SUMMARY:
The vice president of the Dinosaur Society and an accomplished science illustrator combine talents to create an unusual ABC book that brings the world of dinosaurs to life and includes such favorites as Stegosaurus, Tyrannosaurus Rex, and newly discovered Xenotarsaurus.
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Overview

SUMMARY:
The vice president of the Dinosaur Society and an accomplished science illustrator combine talents to create an unusual ABC book that brings the world of dinosaurs to life and includes such favorites as Stegosaurus, Tyrannosaurus Rex, and newly discovered Xenotarsaurus.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In this handsome and useful work, several of Barlowe's (Expedition) intricately detailed, vibrantly colored paintings possess an almost photographic clarity. Also impressive is the artwork's semblance of motion, as these beasts scurry across vivid landscapes, doing battle or foraging for food. Opposite each full-page illustration, Dodson (Giant Dinosaurs; Baby Dinosaurs) provides brief, lively descriptions of the various species. Beneath these entries are line drawings of each creature's skeleton or skull-by Michael Meaker, staff illustrator at L.A.'s Natural History Museum-and addenda focusing on specific physical characteristics. (Meaker's clean line art also illustrates a concluding compilation of vital statistics.) Though kids at the upper end of this target audience are beyond this format, they will surely be fascinated by the subject matter-especially by such creatures as the Xenotarsosaurus and the Zephyrosaurus, said to be recently discovered (just in time to conclude the ABCs!). Ages 6-10. (Mar.)
Children's Literature - Marilyn Courtot
The cover with its pink dinosaurs and an erupting volcano is bound to entice young dinosaur lovers. It seems that people can't get enough of these creatures, either in fantasy like the Dinotopia books or in more factual presentations like Dodson's. He has selected 26 dinosaurs from the Mesozoic Era and they are portrayed based on contemporary thinking. These dinosaurs are active, and their world is depicted more vibrantly than before. Each dinosaur is briefly described and a black and white sketch by Michael Meaker highlight a feature while the full color painting resides on the facing page. For example, the Gallimimus is described as looking like an ostrich, fast moving, and with arms instead of wings. The artist has shown the head in shades of deep blue and the body and legs as two shades of orange and the Gallimimus are in motion. At the back of the book there is a guide for pronunciation and facts about each creature and a short dissertation on what happened to the dinosaurs.
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 4-A standout among the scores of dinosaur books that have stock photos or overused museum art. Barlowe's original artwork, more than the text (which acts almost as captions), is what makes this alphabet book extraordinary. It shows how well illustration can work, by capturing a fine balance of realism, drama, and imagination. These dinosaurs have the weight of real flesh and blood and are shown fighting, eating, or raising their young. Backgrounds of natural phenomena, such as volcanoes, sunsets, and a torrential monsoon, create a sense of drama and mood. The lighting and backdrop tones are also affected by the illustrations' unique settings-an underwater view, a stark rocky hillside, a moonlit evening-none of them typical dinosaur locales. Like their modern relatives the gila monster and macaws, these dinos are often shown to have brightly colored skin tones. But there's always an implication of purpose in their coloration, be it camoflage, mating finery, or species recognition. That's what ultimately makes this book so good. It links the imaginative possibilities of science with facts. The only disappointment is the alphabetical arrangement, which allows for only one creature per letter. Readers are shown T. rex, but not Triceratops. One can only hope for another volume!-Cathryn A. Camper, Minneapolis Public Library
Caroyln Phelan
Using the alphabet as an arbitrary device, this book introduces 26 dinosaurs through brief, informative text and two kinds of artwork. The striking jacket illustration features two shocking pink, tooth-and-claw dinosaurs leaping at each other against a background of orange smoke billowing from an erupting volcano. Barlowe, the author-illustrator of "Barlowe's Guide to Extraterrestrials" and creator of numerous sf book jackets, will certainly draw readers to the book with his dramatic paintings of dinosaur days. Minute details give the illusion of realism to the fantastic scenes. Throughout the book, each right-hand page displays a full-color painting. On the left, a precise black-and-white ink drawing shows a full skeleton or a detail of bones, along with a few lines of text commenting on the dinosaur's physical features and habits. Offering a new look at an old favorite, this book won't stay on the shelf for long.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781876964399
Publisher:
ibooks, Incorporated
Publication date:
02/28/1995
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
4 MB

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