Animalsby Moira Butterfield, Rosalinda Kightley (Illustrator)
Pets at home, creatures of the sea, beasts from places hot and coldanimals, animals everywhere! Meet a menagerie of magnificent animals and learn lots about them, too. There are facts about ones from the farm and ones that fly, about the noises they make and the homes they create; about the way they walk and they way they "talk." What do you know about their colors and patterns: could you say which creature is spotted and which stripy? (Hint: they're both big cats!) Guess the names of baby animals, and spin the finger to check on your answer. There's plenty of extra fun information, too, and colorful pictures everywhere.
Gr 3–5—Truly ambitious in scope, but generally managing to avoid either assemblages of vague generalities or barrages of random facts, these surveys present coherent overviews of their topics. Animals breaks out the taxonomic nomenclature on the first spread ("There are about thirty-five different phyla") and goes on to discuss habitats and food chains, profile selected animal classes, and treat other topics before rounding off with endangered and recently extinct creatures, and conservation. Likewise, Space tours the solar system from Mercury to the dwarf planets of the Kuiper Belt, then continues on to the history of space exploration, space suits, space telescopes, and the "space mystery" of dark energy. Whew! Bright photos, graphics, insets, captions, and bite-size text blocks form uncluttered arrangements on each page. VERDICT Fine choices for filling broad gaps in smaller collections.
- Parragon, Incorporated
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