Children's Literature - Dianne Ochiltree
Garter snakes are among the most common in North America, and there is a good chance that many kids living in rural or suburban settings have seen one in their summer garden. But where do these backyard snakes go in the winter? Young readers will love finding out the answer to this and other questions in this title in the popular "first facts" series. There are sections dedicated to the adaptive physiology, behavior, habitats, and life cycle of the garter snake. The book is nicely designed for either reading cover-to-cover or for perusing the pages at random. Each two-page spread features a main body of text, a �fun fact' bubble and a highlighted definition of a key scientific term used in the text, plus a gloriously close-up, full-color photo of a garter snake in action. At the back of the book, kids will find a complete glossary, subject index, and suggestions on where to look for more information about these mysterious and fascinating reptiles. Of special interest is the FactHound search engine offered by Capstone to help kids find age-appropriate and safe websites on this topic. The search engine can be accessed by entering the book's ID number on their www.facthound.com site. The book features sturdy library binding and heavy paper stock so it will stand up to repeated readings by students and library patrons. Reviewer: Dianne Ochiltree
School Library Journal
This set does a solid job of covering fundamental facts about snakes. Clear prose describes physical features, environments, and behaviors in a way that is easy to follow. Several "Fun Fact" text boxes add extra information and glossary definitions appear at the bottom of the page where the term is used, a nice feature for younger readers. Color photographs illustrate a variety of species within the general group, though usually without captions for specific identification. Each book includes a baby snake scene, a close-up of the head showing key features, and at least one impressive view of a snake swallowing its prey.