Playing on the names of marine animals, children learn about their history and habitat.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's WeeklyFrom fiddler crabs to pistol shrimp, the colorful monikers of a dozen marine creatures serve as bait in this uneven underwater primer. Gag line introductions (``Does a squirrel-fish eat nuts?'' ``Can a sea horse run a race?'') hook the reader's interest, then lead into brief natural history lessons. Whimsical caricatures (a queen angelfish wearing a crown, a parrotfish spreading feathered wings) share spreads with true-to-life depictions of the fish in their habitats. Unfortunately, Marcellan-Allen's watercolors of the actual animals lack sufficient definition to distinguish them from the parodies, and the text is similarly tentative in its balance of goofiness and elementary facts. See Matthew and Thomas Long's Any Bear Can Wear Glasses (reviewed Oct. 30) for a more successful use of the catchy-name device in profiling various creatures. Ages 3-7. (Nov.)
School Library JournalGr 1-3-Dokken takes a nonscientific approach to providing information about marine life. Each animal is introduced by an inane question and described in a two-page entry. A few basic facts are given, but the creature itself is anthropomorphized and trivialized. Throughout the text, the author uses plays on words, e.g., "How Sweet Is a Jellyfish?" and "How Many Riddles Does the Ridley Turtle Know?" Also, the book is padded with statements such as "I'm sure the porcupine fish is glad to have lots of prickly spines to protect him." Amateurish, full-color illustrations often repeat the theme of the initial question. The clownfish is shown wearing a clown hat while hovering around an anemone. The jellyfish has a tentacle dipping into a bag of sugar. "Can a Pistol Shrimp Shoot?" is illustrated with shrimp wearing cowboy hats and brandishing six shooters. Although some information is buried in these entries, it is outweighed by the book's silliness and garish pictures.Frances E. Millhouser, Chantilly Regional Library, VA
- Aqua Quest Publications, Inc.
- Publication date:
- Product dimensions:
- 8.41(w) x 9.43(h) x 0.39(d)
- Age Range:
- 3 - 6 Years
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