Children's Literature - Marilyn CourtotIn this spin off from the PBS science program "The New Explorers," Bill Kurtis, the show's host, provides an introduction that lauds the challenge of new discoveries and the fascination that they offer. Animal Intelligence takes a look at the work of several scientists who are trying to better understand dolphins, specifically their echolocation system and communication skills. Readers will be intrigued and drawn to these creatures who seem to actually enjoy human companionship. A book filled with plenty of facts in a compact 48-page format.
School Library Journal - School Library JournalGr 5-8--Focusing on humanity's interest in dolphins, this book describes scientific research on dolphin/human communication. Studies by Randy Brill, who specializes in echolocation at the Brookfield Zoo in Illinois, and by John Lilly, who created a language in which a computer translated human words into dolphin sounds that they seemed to understand, are among those featured. Interspersed throughout the lively text and colorful format are some facts about dolphins and discussions of animal-intelligence theories. Because this book was adapted from a TV science series, many of the illustrations are of poor quality. Of the eight books listed for further reading, five are more than five years old; the list of related web sites is more helpful for reports. An additional purchase at best, but an enthusiastic invitation to scientific study.--Kathleen McCabe, East Meadow Public Library, NY
Kirkus ReviewsAn entry in The New Explorers books, adapted from the PBS series of the same name. The television techniques of overly dramatic prose, tightly framed images, and quick cut-away discussions do not translate well into print. There are too few details given on the contemporary scientists who are mentioned, and too little context provided for their work in animal intelligence, brain size, languages, etc. A busy format includes marginal full-color photographs from the programs, colored captions, pull-quotes, and borders; readers may be dazzled, but they won't come away with integrated information.
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