19 November 2009

Extreme Animals

by Steve Parker Illustrated by Stuart Martin

ABC Books, Non fiction, Hardback rrp $35.00

Show me the kid who doesn’t want to read about extreme animals and I’ll show them this book and change their mind. From the orange eyed sabre-tooth tiger trying to claw its way off the front cover to the quiz inside the back, Extreme Animals is a book to grab the reader who steps too close. Perfect for boys aged 5 to 12 and girls with an interest in zoology or quirky facts.

Some animals are extreme survivors like the cockroach, the Emperor Penguin or the Australian water holding frog. Other animals are very dangerous like the giant squid or the tiny spider. And you don’t want to marry a preying mantis. It’s deadly!!

The facts in Extreme Animals are presented in a variety of eye-catching ways. Under flaps, inside pockets and on cards. There are colours, fonts and shapes galore, as well as photos and lifelike drawings of each animal.

In the centre is a paper art pop-up frill-necked lizard. That’s the Don’t Mess With Me page. My favourite page was the one that followed, Amazing Appetites. I knew about the gigantic appetites of the blue whale and the anaconda but I had never heard of the deep-sea gulper eel and had never thought how enormous the appetite of a swarm of tiny locusts is.

This book is an excellent choice for the young non-reader on your Christmas shopping list.

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