Young animal lovers and science fans will glom onto this paper-over-board information book, brimming with facts and humor.
An inviting design allows readers to dip in and out or read straight through the profiles of 50 fascinating creatures, which appear in alphabetical order. Each creature's treatment gives the scientific name, the Kingdom, Phylum, Class, etc., a map of its habitat, a brief description and fun factoid, plus a picture of the creature with a scale of inches or feet. The factoids might be his "short poem" tributes to animals of land, sea and sky (the bilby, blobfish, dugong, etc.), or a visual progression of a process unique to the creature (the regeneration of the axolotl's tail, for instance). There's a "Pop Quiz" for the Chinese giant salamander, which can measure up to six feet, and "Platyfacts" for the platypus. Artist Jelmer Noordeman illustrates each animal with scientific accuracy, while playing up its distinctive features.
With its quirky facts and creatures and the sense of a world waiting to be revealed, this book may well inspire a new generation of budding scientists. --Jennifer M. Brown, children's editor, Shelf Awareness