Looking for Jaguar: And Other Rain Forest Poems


Looking for Jaguar takes you on an expedition through the world's rain forests. In Costa Rica you will trek across a jungle in the clouds. In Brazil you will canoe among treetops. In Belize you will stand in the spattering rain listening ...

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Lee Christiansen U.S.A. 2005 Hard Cover New 9 x 11. First Edition. First printing. A new glossy pictorial hardcover book. No D/J. Takes you on an expedition through the world's ... rain forests to see astonishing things, and true! Read more Show Less

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Looking for Jaguar takes you on an expedition through the world's rain forests. In Costa Rica you will trek across a jungle in the clouds. In Brazil you will canoe among treetops. In Belize you will stand in the spattering rain listening to howler monkeys roar. In Borneo you will cling to a rope bridge high in the canopy.

And what will you see? Astonishing things:

  • A flower three feet in diameter that stinks like rotting meat
  • An antelope so small and a frog so large that both are the same size
  • A flying snake
  • A tree that walks

Astonishing — and true!

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 2-4-Katz brings attention to a number of fascinating animals and plants, among them piranhas, walking trees, rainbow lorikeets, jaguars, and giant armadillos. The 19 poems are accompanied by a facts section and a two-page essay on rain forests and their significance. Unfortunately, though a few of the poems are memorable ("Anaconda" ably conjures the shiver-inducing terror of this giant snake), the majority are undistinguished in either sound or imagery. Both the first and last poems are pantoums: "Looking for Jaguar" creates a mood of dreamy watchfulness, but "Canopy" seems merely tedious with lines like, "We stand at the top of the world/In a garden of flowers high in the air./Among the billowing waves of green,/Bluebirds and hornbills feast on yellow figs." Christiansen's pastels add little. Using a murky green palette, the composition of many pages seems unfocused and forced. The art also fails to convey a sense of perspective, or to hint at the abundance of life. There are a number of better books on rain forests, ranging from Lynne Cherry's The Great Kapok Tree (Harcourt, 1990) and Jenny Baker's Where the Forest Meets the Sea (HarperCollins, 1988) to Brenda Guiberson's Rain, Rain, Rain Forest (Holt, 2004).-Marilyn Taniguchi, Beverly Hills Public Library, CA Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
In the most compelling tour for younger children since Jane Yolen's Welcome to the Green House (1993), Katz presents 19 wonderfully evocative glimpses, mostly in rhyme, of rain-forest flora and fauna. Encountering huge spiders, rainbow-fledged birds, walking trees, a giant armadillo sporting a "hundred-tooth smile and his own suit of armor, / He's really a one-in-a-million-y charmer" and other memorable denizens, Katz transports readers to exotic, mysterious locales, "Where purple flowers float like butterflies, / We listen for the jaguar's grunting call. / The air's so hot and wet it's hard to breathe. / The darkness seems alive-it watches us." Using plenty of greens and yellows, Christiansen provides a dense, leafy setting through which a tiger and an immense anaconda glide, while a gigantic rafflesia flower swells on the ground, and birds and reptiles flit about the high canopies. Though she casts an occasional glance elsewhere, Katz generally stays in the South and Central American rain forests: Still, capped by specific notes and a tour of rain forests worldwide, her insights make essential reading for every child. (Picture book/nonfiction. 7-11)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780060297916
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 3/15/2005
  • Pages: 40
  • Age range: 5 - 9 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.25 (d)

Meet the Author

Susan Katz is the author of the picture books Mrs. Brown on Exhibit and Other Museum Poems, which Kirkus Reviews called "totally delightful," and A Revolutionary Field Trip: Poems of Colonial America. She shares her love of poetry by running poetry workshops for children in schools and elsewhere. Her novel Snowdrops For Cousin Ruth was cowinner of the Paterson Prize and a Publishers Weekly "Flying Start." She lives in Phoenixville, PA.

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