The Animal Book: A Collection of the Fastest, Fiercest, Toughest, Cleverest, Shyest-and Most Surprising-Animals on Earth

The Animal Book: A Collection of the Fastest, Fiercest, Toughest, Cleverest, Shyest-and Most Surprising-Animals on Earth

3.0 2
by Steve Jenkins
     
 

Animals smooth and spiky, fast and slow, hop and waddle through the two hundred plus pages of the Caldecott Honor artist Steve Jenkins’s most impressive nonfiction offering yet. Sections such as “Animal Senses,” “Animal Extremes,” and “The Story of Life” burst with fascinating facts and infographics that will have

Overview


Animals smooth and spiky, fast and slow, hop and waddle through the two hundred plus pages of the Caldecott Honor artist Steve Jenkins’s most impressive nonfiction offering yet. Sections such as “Animal Senses,” “Animal Extremes,” and “The Story of Life” burst with fascinating facts and infographics that will have trivia buffs breathlessly asking, “Do you know a termite queen can produce up to 30,000 eggs a day?” Jenkins’s color-rich cut- and torn-paper artwork is as strikingly vivid as ever. Rounding out this bountiful browsers’ almanac of more than three hundred animals is a discussion of the artist’s bookmaking process, an animal index, a glossary, and a bibliography. A bookshelf essential!

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
★ 09/23/2013
Jenkins compiles more than 300 animals, using a loosely encyclopedic format with sections covering topics like “Animal Extremes,” “Predators,” and “Animal Senses.” Jenkins’s always skillful use of cut- and torn-paper animal artwork appears throughout (several images comes from his earlier books), while factually detailed captions describe each subject, resulting in a vibrant juxtaposition of science and art. Fascinating creatures and characteristics abound: “Most deep-sea creatures cannot see red light. But the spotlight loosejaw can detect it, and it is the bizarre fish’s secret weapon.” A colossal squid’s eye (shown actual size) fills an entire spread, and Jenkins closes out the book with sections on the history of life on earth, additional animal facts, and a discussion of how he goes about creating books. In showcasing the riches and peculiarities of the natural world, Jenkins offers plenty to seize (and satisfy) readers’ curiosities. Ages 6–10. (Oct.)
From the Publisher

"Building on years of experience in selecting animal facts and creating arresting illustrations, Jenkins surpasses his previous work with an amazing album characterized by clear organization, realistic images and carefully chosen examples. . . . This is a must-purchase for animal-loving families and most libraries."
Kirkus, starred review

"This is a beautiful book that belongs in most collections; it will engage browsers for hours, and the many textual features make it an excellent choice for classroom curricula."
Booklist, starred review

"With so much to look at, this attractive browsing book will fascinate children thirsty for animal facts."
School Library Journal

"In showcasing the riches and peculiarities of the natural world, Jenkins offers plenty to seize (and satisfy) readers' curiosities."
Publishers Weekly, starred review

"This will be an ideal holiday gift for kids who love animals or who love Steve Jenkins books—and that amounts to a lot of kids."
Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

"Charts and graphs throughout are as intriguing as the animals themselves; an index of the featured animals is pretty much brilliant, including not just page numbers but size, habitat, and diet."
The Horn Book Magazine, starred review

Children's Literature - Kim Dare
Elementary students who cannot get enough animal factoids will relish Jenkins’ latest offering. Encyclopedic in nature, the volume is divided into chapters and subchapters that may seem rather arbitrary. These are: Animals, Family, Animal Senses, Predators, Defenses, Animal Extremes, The Story of Life, More Information. But while these categories seem odd, the writing flows quite well. The wide variety of animals he portrays with his signature cut- or torn-paper collages, most of which are accompanied by captions, allow readers to get an idea of nature’s vast diversity. A few of the animals (or their eggs) are even shown actual-size in a nod to that earlier work (Actual Size, 2004). Jenkins uses infographics effectively, especially when he shows the breakdown of the groups within the animal kingdom: almost three quarters of the pie chart is devoted to insects, with approximately 1,000,000 species, whereas mammals get only a tiny sliver, with 5,490 species. While children will not find a high level of detail on individual species, the overview of different animal groups and how they relate to each other is impressive. Back matter includes a glossary and index as well as thumbnail illustrations of 265 of the species featured in the book with an interesting fact about each and the page numbers on which they appear. Several pages describing Jenkins’ book-making process are an added bonus. As Nic Bishop does with his photographs, Jenkins combines his artistic talent and his passion for science to inspire the next generation of zoologists. Reviewer: Kim Dare; Ages 6 to 12.
School Library Journal
10/01/2013
Gr 2–6—Jenkins draws from his earlier books to craft this richly detailed work with handsome cut- and torn-paper illustrations. Numerous animal facts are organized into seven topical chapters. A few extinct animals are included. Chapters offer information about animal families, senses, predators, defenses, and extremes, and about life from an evolutionary perspective. Material within each chapter is presented in segments that average two pages in length and consist of a descriptive paragraph, several colorful illustrations that vary in size, and detailed captions. Each chapter concludes with a related chart or graph. Some text in the "Timeline of animal life" is lost in the book's gutter, and the "How many eyes do animals have?" chart notes that wasps have five eyes but the corresponding illustration only shows four. Jenkins's artwork is recognizable from earlier works; for example, the giant squid eye and Siberian tiger spreads found in Actual Size (Houghton Harcourt, 2004) are replicated here. A lengthy alphabetically arranged, appended section includes even more animal details paired with tiny artwork. The book has a useful table of contents. Tucked between the glossary and bibliography, which includes materials published between 1951 and 2010, is a welcome section on Jenkins's bookmaking process. The closing page showcases the works from which material included here has been taken. With so much to look at, this attractive browsing book will fascinate children thirsty for animals facts. Students doing reports on a specific animal will need to consult other resources.—Lynn Vanca, Freelance Librarian, Akron, OH
Kirkus Reviews
★ 2013-09-01
Building on years of experience in selecting animal facts and creating arresting illustrations, Jenkins surpasses his previous work with an amazing album characterized by clear organization, realistic images and carefully chosen examples. The thoughtful, appealing design will both attract browsers and support those looking for specifics, but this also provides a solid introduction to the vast animal kingdom. After a chapter of definition, information is presented in sections on animal families, senses, predators, defenses, extremes and the story of life. More facts appear in the final chapter, which serves both as index (with page numbers and thumbnails) and quick reference. Most spreads have an explanatory paragraph and then a number of examples, each with an animal image and a sentence or two of detail set on white background. These cut- and torn-paper illustrations have realistic color and features: eyes that look at readers, teeth that amaze, and tiny legs, whiskers or feelers. Some are actual size or show a close-up portion of the animal's body. Sections end with a jaw-dropping two-page image; chapters end with charts. Jenkins fills out this appealing celebration with a description of his bookmaking process. With facts sure to delight readers--who will be impatient to share their discoveries--this spectacular book is a must-purchase for animal-loving families and most libraries. (glossary, bibliography) (Nonfiction. 5 & up)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780547557991
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
10/29/2013
Pages:
208
Sales rank:
166,702
Product dimensions:
8.70(w) x 10.90(h) x 1.20(d)
Lexile:
IG1030L (what's this?)
Age Range:
6 - 10 Years

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Meet the Author

Steve Jenkins, illustrator of more than thirty children’s books, won a Caldecott Honor for What Do You Do With a Tail Like This? He lives in Colorado with his wife and frequent collaborator, Robin Page, and their children. Visit his website at www.stevejenkinsbooks.com.

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The Animal Book: A Collection of the Fastest, Fiercest, Toughest, Cleverest, Shyest--and Most Surprising--Animals on Earth 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The illustrations in this book are beautiful and all the facts about various animals are fascinating. It's easily a book that you can sit and page through for hours on end or take a quick look at few at a time. Not to miss!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago