Eyewitness Living Earth

Eyewitness Living Earth

by Miranda Smith

Editorial Reviews

VOYA - Kathleen D. Hutchins
Once again Dorling Kindersley has produced a beautiful coffee table book. Its oversized format and colorful photographs make enjoyable browsing for all ages. However, it will not work well for school reports. The info-bits are much too scanty, except to pique interest and send one to a book on the topic. Such a large topic as plants is covered in eighteen pages composed of two-page spreads which are mostly photographs. In an attempt to be brief, the small amount of information given can be misleading, as in "gold dust called pollen." Not all pollen is golden colored. In the simplified description of leaves covered in "fur," no explanation is make about what it really is or why the plant is like that. One glaring omission is in the first chapter on how plant and animal life evolved on earth. There is no time line, no sense of what came before, what coexisted, and what is happening now. There is little attempt at explaining why species became extinct. The glossary is scanty, defining only more common words. It would be helpful if they were highlighted in the text. Some definitions are included in the text, but highly technical words are ignored entirely. The index is more useful, listing several entries under general topics such as flowers, supporting these with cross-indexing under species names. Not an essential purchase, but it will be popular with browsers. Glossary. Index. Illus. Photos. VOYA Codes: 2Q 2P M J S (Better editing or work by the author might have warranted a 3Q, For the YA with a special interest in the subject, Middle School-defined as grades 6 to 8, Junior High-defined as grades 7 to 9 and Senior High-defined as grades 10 to 12).
School Library Journal
Gr 3-9Like other books from this publisher, the main feature here is the stunning full-color photography; the multitude of illustrations beg to be browsed. Though this title lists plenty of examples of flora and fauna, its best use is in showing how living things interact with the functions and conditions of the Earth. Some examples include an explanation of photosynthesis and a description of how living things adapt to various niches, be they arctic climates or sea bottoms so deep that no light penetrates. Natural phenomena, like weather or rock metamorphosis, are given the same attention as plant and animal processes, such as camouflage and seed dispersion. After paging through all these intricate terrestrial interactions, it's hard not to come away amazed. The Visual Encyclopedia of Science (Larousse Kingfisher Chambers, 1994), another large science compendium, covers outer space and technology, too, with more narrative, making it a more diverse source for quick reference. But for high-quality images of the natural sciences, The Living Planet packs a lot between two covers.Cathryn A. Camper, Minneapolis Public Library
Kirkus Reviews
Another sumptuous feast in the Eyewitness series, consisting of spectacular full-color photographs that explore the world of plants and animals. Chapters are devoted to evolution of life on earth, growth and reproduction of flora and fauna, diversity of habitats, and preservation of life forms. Every double-page layout is a visual treat with a large central photograph and a dozen smaller captioned photos. Bold headlines announce the topic—"Anatomy of a Butterfly," "Fossil Evidence," "Island Life," etc.—and are followed by a brief, difficult opening text that most readers will ignore. The captions provide, sometimes, the scientific names of species depicted, identify body parts, or give odd facts. A glossary helps with some terms; the index is extensive but does not guide readers to the primary discussion of a topic, e.g., there are eight references to photosynthesis, some of which are extremely brief, and others that do not actually use the term.

Product Details

DK Publishing, Inc.
Publication date:
Edition description:
1st American ed
Product dimensions:
9.70(w) x 12.48(h) x 0.74(d)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

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