Dinosaurs: The Most Complete, Up-to-Date Encyclopedia for Dinosaur Lovers of All Ages

Dinosaurs: The Most Complete, Up-to-Date Encyclopedia for Dinosaur Lovers of All Ages

4.6 7
by Thomas R. Holtz, Luis V. Rey

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WRITTEN BY A PROFESSIONAL paleontologist for young readers, this award-winning guide to the complete Dinosauria is packed with enough detail and insider information to satisfy even adult dinophiles! The text includes brief entries on all 800+ "named" species of Mesozoic dinosaurs, as well as chapters on the history of dinosaur discoveries, the science of dinosaur


WRITTEN BY A PROFESSIONAL paleontologist for young readers, this award-winning guide to the complete Dinosauria is packed with enough detail and insider information to satisfy even adult dinophiles! The text includes brief entries on all 800+ "named" species of Mesozoic dinosaurs, as well as chapters on the history of dinosaur discoveries, the science of dinosaur art, dinosaur biology, and much more. With sidebars by 33 world-famous paleontologists and museum-quality illustrations, this is a must-have compendium of fact and fandom that dino enthusiasts of all ages will devour with glee!

Editorial Reviews

Prehistoric Times
Save up your pocket change for another book you are definitely going to want to possess. From dinosaur expert (specializing in T. rex) Tom Holtz and amazing artist Luis Rey comes a very good bet for favorite 2007 dinosaur book in our PT PIX. This new coffee table book covers pretty much everything we know about dinosaurs with tons of all new brightly colorful and amazing new artwork from Luis Rey. As the subtitle says this is one of the most comprehensive, up-to-date, eye-popping and easy to use collections of dino info available today and truly sets a standard for reference material. I'm proud to say that the book starts off with a photo of a pair of dinosaur toys I gave Tom Holtz as a gift (he thanks me in the book). The toys show a couple of favorites of Tom's that got him interested in dinos at an early age and also illustrates that the way we envision dinosaurs has changed; even in just our life times. Chapters then cover everything from a history of dinosaur discovery to evolution and much more to then cover all of the different groups of dinosaurs and the members within each group. Its 42 chapters end describing dinosaur behavior and life in the various ages of the Mesozoic. It's all here in a beautiful format and in language that doesn't talk down to anyone but can be understood by most everyone. All you need in your dino library in one fantastic volume.

Anyone with even a passing interest in dinosaurs should not miss this journey into their diverse and strange world. Holtz and his colleagues fill the book with fascinating details ranging from discoveries of new species (e.g., a sauropod, Amphicoelias, with a mass of 18 elephants) to old favorites (e.g., Tyrannosaurus rex, which may have lived and hunted in packs). They cover major and minor groups, predator-prey relations, social interactions within species, habitats and habits, and evolutionary trends. With its conversational tone and Rey's engaging illustrations, the book should appeal to young adults and a general audience alike.
NSTA (National Science Teachers Association)
This beautifully written and illustrated adventure about the world of dinosaurs will encourage readers to learn more about these mind-boggling creatures that roamed Earth for 178 million years. Sort through the fossil record from the earliest dinosaurs and learn about the diversity of dinosaurs and their extinction 65 million years ago. Vignettes of experts in the field add information about the diverse methods of the field to the facts about these extinct reptiles, while a complete list of genera conveys the breadth and diversity of the group. This NSTA/CBC Outstanding Science Trade Book will be valuable in classrooms from the middle through secondary classrooms, as support for content on adaptations, evolution, or structure/function physiology.
For the older kids, Dinosaurs by Dr. Thomas R. Holtz, Jr. is the most dynamic title on the subject that I have seen for this age group in awhile. Packed full of gorgeous illustrations (by the very talented Luis V. Rey), Dinosaurs is heavy on text and provides an enormous amount of detail on multiple dinosaur families. It is the very original extras that really put this one over the top however, as it also includes contributions by over thirty of the world's leading paleontologists. This means that readers will not only find a few paragraphs on dinosaur skeletons being put together in museums but will also be treated to Jason Poole, of the Academy of Sciences in Philadelphia, explaining just who fossil preparators are and how they do their jobs. "A fossil collection is like a library of fossils for scientists to learn from," writes Poole, which provides a whole new image when thinking of the T-Rex in the Museum of Natural History. In all of the best ways, Dinosaurs is a big general encyclopedia celebrating dozens of different creatures, including both the popularly known and obscure. There are also helpful charts comparing dinosaur age and discussions of how fast dinosaurs grow, how males and females can be told apart and just what daily life might have been like for them. There is even a most interesting contribution from Dr. Robert Bakker, a dinosaur detective, who along with his crew determines how dinosaurs died -- and what killed them -- hundreds of millions of years before. Bakker's explanation of his profession is just one more reason why this book is so compelling. His passionate interest brings long dead creatures alive and makes it easy to see just why some young dinosaurlovers never give up their passion. I'm certain after reading this book he and the other paleontologists involved will have many new fans. (I should also point out that at over 400 pages this is a worthy read for adults as well.)
(4 stars) If you know someone who is serious about dinosaurs - really interested in what they were, how they lived, and what we know and don't know about them - you can scarcely find a better gift for him or her than this hefty, scientifically accurate, meticulously researched, lavishly illustrated volume. Thomas R. Holtz, Jr., a leading authority on tyrannosaurs and the founder and director of the Earth, Life & Time Program at the University of Maryland at College Park, here combines his own knowledge with that of 33 other top paleontologists to present a book about dinosaurs that is truly . . . well . . . encyclopedic.
(Best of 2007: Books for Children) We are fascinated by dinosaurs. As a result, books on the topic are anything but scarce. Even so, Dinosaurs fits in a niche not as well padded out as some of the others because, while there are lots of dinosaur-related books for new readers and young children and many for adults, young adults have less of choice. And their needs are different: they require more meat than younger children. They need more detail and scientific information. At the same time, it should be less sophisticated than the information a book for adults might include. Sure: we want young adults to have all of the information available, but it should be delivered in a way that is highly understandable and won't deter them from their course of discovery. Thomas R. Holtz' Dinosaurs delivers on all of these demands, and more. The book has been written specifically for young adult readers, but from the perspective of a palaeontologist. The information is shared in a gentle and lucid manner and while the writing is crystal clear, he never, ever speaks down to his young readers. And it's not possible to discuss this book without mentioning the illustrations. Luis V. Rey is one of the most respected illustrator of dinosaurs in the world today. Nor are these your grandfather's dinosaurs: all monochromatic and covered by identical rubbery looking skin. Rey's dinosaurs come in every hue of the rainbow. More. And are covered in feathers and scales and tufts of strange fur. Dinosaurs is encyclopaedic in scope and exceeds all expectations. A superior book the young dinosaur lover in your life will cherish.
It may look like a book designed for children, but (as the title says) this is presently the most complete and up-to-date book on dinosaurs you can get your hands on. All the major groups of dinosaurs are covered, reconstructed in eye-popping colors by Luis Rey, and it is a good resource to quickly become familiar with dinosaur diversity. The author of the book, paleontologist Thomas Holtz, has also been updating the list of known dinosaur genera on an online appendix, which is one of the most useful resources available to those wanting to keep up with new discoveries.
School Library Journal

Gr 5 Up
With new discoveries, new theories, new everything in a field once seemingly as set in stone as the fossils themselves, dinosaurian paleontology finds itself in a most unusual state of fluidity. So, when an up-to-date compendium arises from all this new research, it can be a welcome presence. The detailed text can be demanding, but is sometimes even chatty in tone. It covers everything from dinosaur eggs to taxonomy and cladistics to the history of paleontology, glued together with chapters on the dinosaurs themselves. The information is often partnered with sidebars or commentaries by paleontologists working in the field, in museums, and in university labs. The illustrations range from small photos to larger sepia-toned drawings to even larger full-color paintings. Rey has pulled out all the stops with his vision of dino-coloration, but, as no one knows what colors the critters sported, who is to say that Gorgosaurus wasn't the brilliant green of an emerald tree boa? A 48-page "Dinosaur Genus List" is simply slathered with names (many new) and assorted data. Regrettably missing is a bibliography of sources consulted, but the reputations of the sidebar authors, the author, and the illustrator lend credence to this work on "dinosaur science." Less academic than Philip J. Currie and Kevin Padian's well-documented Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs (Academic Press, 1997), more detailed than Paul M. Barrett and J. L. Sanz's National Geographic Dinosaurs (2001), and more informative than David Burnie's The Kingfisher Illustrated Dinosaur Encyclopedia (2001), this eye-catching imagination grabber will be enjoyed (on different levels) by dinophiles of allages.
—Patricia Manning Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
8.13(w) x 11.18(h) x 1.15(d)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

What People are saying about this

Roger Smith
"I am holding a treasure. Just like the small boy I once was when I first became interested in dinosaurs, I don't really want to let it go! Dr. Thomas R Holtz and Luis V. Rey are well known for their previous collaborations and in this volume they have produced a sumptuous array of all things 'dinosaurial'. The encyclopedia is very well written and scientific in its approach, without ever getting bogged down in jargon or becoming boring. From the basics of cladistics to the final demise of land-based dinosaurs at the end of the Cretaceous, 'Dinosaurs' covers every topic of interest with informative text and superb illustrations. Of particular interest are the working drawings of Luis V. Rey, illustrating not only a topic but also his method of working towards the full realization of the colour illustrations. As with all top rate illustrators he has a very fluid hand which adds to the movement he achieves in his drawings. I particular enjoyed the side panel inclusion of profiles, of thirty three renowned dinosaur experts including one of the best known, Dr "Jack" Horner from the Museum of the Rockies. As the author states," The World doesn't need another A to Z list of Dinosaurs". He succeeds admirably in producing a book that traces the family history and evolution of dinosaurs. This book is certainly is not a mere A to Z. It is a fascinating, easily read and all-encompassing account of a subject that is clearly dear to Thomas Holtz's heart. f I have one grumble (and it is only a very small one) it would the front cover and dust jacket illustration. The image reproduction appears rather muted and not in the sharpest of focus. It is certainly not indicative of the quality of Luis Rey'sart work found within the book itself. This is a book that should have pride of place on any bookshelf. It certainly will on mine.--(Roger Smith, Publisher, Dinosaurnews)

Meet the Author

Dr. Thomas R. Holtz, Jr. is one of the world's leading experts on carnivorous dinosaurs. He lives in Clinton, Maryland.

Luis V. Rey is one of the most highly respected dinosaur artists working today. He lives in London, England.

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Dinosaurs: The Most Complete, Up-to-Date Encyclopedia for Dinosaur Lovers of All Ages 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
I am not a paleontologist (obviously). I am not, truth be told, even a dinosaur fanatic. What I am is a reader who is always looking to extend my knowledge base on interesting subjects, and this dinosaur encyclopedia fulfills that quest in spades!

Everything you could ever want to know about dinosaurs -- all types, all genuses, all sizes and shapes and colors -- is detailed, extensively, within the pages of DINOSAURS. There are wonderful illustrations by Luis V. Rey, timelines, graphs, rock cycles, detailed drawings of skeletons -- you name it, and this book has it. With an appendix that includes a 48-page Dinosaur Genus List and a Glossary of hundreds of terms, this is pretty much the only encyclopedia on dinosaurs that you're ever going to need.

I'm sure that some scientifically-minded people will yearn to find something that is missing, and they may even find it. But for the general dinosaur lover, this is definitely the book to add to your collection. Although the reading level is too advanced for younger children, those over the age of eight will find plenty to keep them interested and entertained.

DINOSAURS is highly recommended for classroom and home libraries, or as the perfect present for that dinosaur crazy kid on your gift list.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you can only get one dinosaur book, get this one. And if you know anyone who is even remotely interested in dinosaurs and doesn't have this book, give a copy to them as a gift. This book has all bases covered. It starts out with a few introductory chapters on the history of paleontology, fossilization, the age of the earth, taxonomy, paleo art, cladistics, and the origin of dinosaurs. Most of the book, however, is split up into chapters that discuss the various dinosaur groups, their history, phylogeny, appearance, and possible behavior. The last few chapters talk about physiology, extinction, how scientists figure out dinosaur behavior, and go into more detail about the history of the Mesozoic era. The appendix is a list of all dinosaur genera known at the time of publication and includes information on their age, size, and etymology. By the time you finish with it, you'll know almost all there is to know about dinosaurs. The writing is crystal clear and easy for laypeople, including children, to understand, and the tone is quite humorous and conversational. (I happen to have seen Dr. Thomas Holtz on some documentary shows, and he really talks similar to the way he writes.) Even comparatively complicated subjects like cladistics are easily explained. Luis Rey's art is wonderful and extremely vibrant, as it always is. Some of his illustrations in this book are old, but many are new. A few are updated versions of old paintings. There is even a particularly weird/creepy illustration on the very last page of the book to surprise readers. Because this book is written by a professional paleontologist, one can trust that its information is highly accurate and mentions all the latest research. (And although dinosaur paleontology changes so quickly that even this book has been outdated in some respects, Dr. Holtz is thoughtful enough to provide updates on his website.) There are other volumes like this, but many of them are quite technical. It's good to see one made available for laypeople to read.
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I love this book1! It is the best book I ever read! Thomas Holt did a great job and the illustrations Luis Rey made were excellent. I would recomend this to anyone who likes dinosaur.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Holtz and Rey's i Dinosaurs /i raises the bar not just for all dinosaur books but for all children's books on any subject. I have never -- never -- seen a children's non-fiction book tackle its subject so head-on, in such depth, and with such approachability as this new encyclopedia does. It has something for everyone: the youngest child can enjoy Luis Rey's distinctive, dynamic illustrations slightly older children will appreciate the descriptions of individual dinosaurs those older still will be able to understand chapters on the history of dinosaurs, the fossilisation process, geological time and more. And even most adults will learn something from the chapter on cladistics -- surely a first in a book aimed primarily at children. Tom Holtz is respected as one of the world's leading experts on tyrannosaurs, and more generally for his gift of explaining complex concepts as simply and clearly as possible. His prose is easy to read without being condescending, and always informative. Luis Rey is known for his characteristically colourful and feathery dinosaur art: his work could not be more different from the ``old-school'' dinosaur art of Knight and Burian: it's a welcome antidote to the dull, slow image of dinosaurs that predominated in the books of twenty or even ten years ago. That vividness is combined with a scientific rigour that is by no means universal in dinosaur art to give a new and exciting view of how dinosaurs may well have looked in life. The book's coverage is impressively complete. An appendix gives basic information on every dinosaur named at the time of publication (about 800 genera), and the main part of the book is a sequence of chapters describing particular dinosaur groups in much more detail. For example, there are separate chapters about coelophysoids and ceratosaurs, spinosauroids, carnosaurs, primitive coelurosaurs, tyrannosauroids, ornithomimosaurs and alvarezsaurs, oviraptorosaurs and therizinosauroids, deinonychosaurs and avialans -- and that's just the theropods! Ornithischians are covered in similar detail, and while sauropodomorphs as usual draw the short straw, they do at least receive four chapters (twice as many as in i The Dinosauria /i , 2nd edition!) Not only that, the book is BIG -- roughly A4 in size and a good inch thick, printed on thick, glossy paper. Weighing in at a solid 1.7 kg, it has the heft of a proper encyclopedia. At the price (currently $25.19) it's truly absurd value for money, and sits comfortably on the shelf alongside the Glut and Currie-and-Padian encyclopedias costing five times as much. If I had to criticise this book, then its one imperfection would the absence of a chapter on osteology. A tour of the dinosaur skeleton, explaining the names of the bones, how they fit together and what they do would have been a perfect fit for the more advanced material that's already included. But when the only thing you can criticise about a book is that you wish there was more of it, you know you're on to a good thing.