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Wicked Bugs (Young Readers Edition): The Meanest, Deadliest, Grossest Bugs on Earth

Wicked Bugs is not for the faint of heart. Author/bookseller Amy Stewart's (Lady Cop Makes Trouble) young readers edition of her adult nonfiction title featuring insects, spiders, worms and other creepy-crawlies is sure to thrill budding entomologists, but may leave others feeling mysterious prickles on their skin. Briony Morrow-Cribbs's illustrations throughout enhance the sinister nature of these creatures, giving the book a powerful gross factor--perfect for the middle grade target audience.

Wicked Bugs is divided into six categories of vicious vermin: Deadly Creatures, Everyday Dangers, Unwelcome Invaders, Destructive Pests, Serious Pains and Terrible Threats. Within each category, readers will discover species discussed with spine-tingling details and amazing facts. Marching across the pages of each chapter are Morrow-Cribbs's realistic illustrations, complete with texture and depth. Wicked Bugs is the entomophobe's version of a car wreck: Stewart has compiled such interesting information on otherwise repellent critters that readers can't help but keep turning the pages in anticipation of what will come next.

This accessible, middle-grade version of Wicked Bugs combines science, anthropology and history with a powerful yuck-factor. It's sure to be a hit with even the most reluctant readers--just be prepared for some serious goose bumps and skin tingles along the way. --Jen Forbus, freelancer