Before the aftereffects of a giant meteor impact snuffed them out 65 million years ago, dinosaurs roamed the world for more than 165 million years. Such longevity gives Gail Gibbons a lot to cover in this informative picture book, but she handles the job ably. In bright gatefolds, she introduces young readers to all the residents of real-life Jurassic and Cretaceous parks and describes how paleontologists are adding to this treasure trove of knowledge.
Kids have a boundless fascination with dinosaurs. This book will whet their appetite and the appetite of those who are fascinated with the discovery of fossils. The book is about nonbird-land-dwelling dinosaurs. The author's note explains that scientists depend upon fossilized remains and guesswork to determine how a dinosaur looked, and that many more dinosaur fossils remain to be discovered. While many fossils have been unearthed by paleontologists, some have been found by amateurs. The "Age of the Dinosaurs" is shown in a chart pointing out the era and periods when dinosaurs roamed the earth. Readers are provided with information about the various types of creatures, and where and how the fossils were discovered, in a format sure to capture their interest. The illustrations will appeal to them as well, making this a book a valuable resource that will be used and enjoyed by young readers. 2005, Holiday House, Ages 6 to 9.
—Carolyn Mott Ford
School Library Journal
Gr 3-4-Gibbons leaps backward into the world of dinosaurs, starting with the cosmic event that may have caused their extinction 65 million years ago. From there she reviews the three geologic periods of the Age of Dinosaurs and provides a brief history of paleontology and its modern methods. What follows are busy pictorial spreads that feature a variety of saurians by classification (e.g., ceratopsians, stegasaurs, etc.) The swirling colorful illustrations depict enough dinos to satisfy novices, though Oviraptor lacks his crest and definitive beak, and Kentrosaurus his formidable shoulder spikes. Also, while Torosaurus once held the slot for the largest skull, it has been ousted by a recent find of an even larger pentoceratopsian skull. No dimensions are provided, but the nesting behavior of Maiasaurus is shown, as is the evolutionary connection between small theropods and modern birds. The book is vigorous, crowded, and slightly flawed, but it will entice young novices into demanding MORE.- Patricia Manning, formerly at Eastchester Public Library, NY Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.