Gr 2-6-- Stegosaurs have had a stodgy image over the years. These dinosaurs with ``Ping-Pong-ball-size'' brains never generated as much attention or drama as the mighty carnivores. But Sattler's latest offering changes all that by presenting well-organized arguments to contradict the stereotype of the less-than-intelligent stego. It's everything anyone could want in a dinosaur book. The author presents intriguing, up-to-date information about 11 varieties of Stegosaurs, including what they looked like, where they lived, and what they ate. She also discusses current theories about their eggs and babies, and the recent hypothesis that the plates along their spines were used to regulate their body temperatures. Unlike many such books and dictionaries, this one provides plenty of well-indexed information for report writers. The attractive watercolor illustrations are helpful and clear, as are the further-reading list (although it tends to be directed at an older reading group than the book) and the life-span chart. An interesting addition is a map of the location of stegosaur remains in the modern world, which includes insets showing the positions of the continents at the time these creatures lived. Superior science writing. --Cathryn A. Camper, Minneapolis Public Library
Sattler's usual easy style and love of her subject make reading about the unappreciated stegosaurus a treat. As slow-witted and ungainly as stegosaurus appears, it was a highly successful dinosaur. Stegosaurus and other members of the Stegosaur family had relatively small brains, but their spiked tails for defense and their plated backs, which may have provided "air conditioning," made them well suited to their environment. Some of MacCombie's dinosaurs look a little posed, but she uses the full palette to paint her subjects, and overall the illustrations fit nicely with the text. Bibliography.