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Who's Been Here?: A Tale in Tracks

Overview

In this fun-filled and informative book, we take a winter walk with a rambunctious golden retriever Willy. Of course he leaves his paw prints in the snow. But there are other tracks, too, and none of them matches his. One by one, we find out what animals they belong to: a cat, a gull, a raccoon, a snowshoe hare, a bear, a moose, and-uh oh!-a skunk!

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Overview

In this fun-filled and informative book, we take a winter walk with a rambunctious golden retriever Willy. Of course he leaves his paw prints in the snow. But there are other tracks, too, and none of them matches his. One by one, we find out what animals they belong to: a cat, a gull, a raccoon, a snowshoe hare, a bear, a moose, and-uh oh!-a skunk!

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal

PreS-Gr 2

This question-and-answer picture book invites readers to guess which animal is nearby based on tracks in the snow. Three children follow their dog, Willy, out for a run on a winter's day; the action takes place inside a frame of sticks on each page, with a close-up view of the tracks in the borders. The children encounter the prints of a cat, turkey, fox, raccoon, rabbit, deer, moose, bear, and skunk. This last animal has an unfortunate encounter with Willy, leading to a humorous ending. Though the overall concept and visual palette are similar to Lindsay Barrett George's In the Snow (HarperCollins, 1995), the focus here is entirely on tracks instead of various signs of animal life. Hayes's watercolors evoke the frosty air of a winter wood, and Hodgkins's simple, repetitive text allows readers to be a part of the story. With multiple curriculum connections and a style perfect for group sharing, this book is ideal for classrooms or storytimes.-Kathleen Kelly MacMillan, Carroll County Public Library, MD

Kirkus Reviews
Willy the dog loves winter, when he can run through town and up into the woods to see what other sorts of animals are about. Three siblings follow their dog and make a guessing game out of the tracks they see in the snow: Who's Been Here? Outside the twig-framed illustrations are tracks readers can use to make their own guesses. The text also gives clues as to each animal's identity, and a turn of the page reveals the answer. The animals in this northeastern forest and nearby community include a cat, turkey, fox, raccoon, rabbit, deer, moose, bear and skunk (an unfortunate run-in with which ends Willy's romps with his child friends). Hayes's tracks are clearly delineated, allowing young trackers to easily identify the ones they know and to recognize the ones that are unfamiliar. A subdued palette of blues and grays nicely suits the wintry setting. All in all, an enjoyable complement to Jim Arnosky's Wild Tracks! A Guide to Nature's Footprints (2008). (Picture book. 3-7)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780892727148
  • Publisher: Down East Books
  • Publication date: 10/25/2008
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.60 (w) x 11.30 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Fran Hodgkins

Fran Hodgkins is the author of The Orphan Seal, winner of the Henry Bergh Children's Book Award, presented by the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. This is Fran Hodgkins's first Let's-Read-and-Find-Out Science book. She lives in Maryland.

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