Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Winter Reading 2019 Cute as an Axolotl


Jess Keating has added a new title to her nonfiction series, The World of Weird Animals. Readers may already be familiar with the entertaining and enlightening Pink Is for Blobfish or What Makes a Monster? titles already in the series. This time out Keating has been busy "Discovering the World's Most Adorable Animals," as the subtitle announces.

The layout of the contents features a full-page photo of the animal, so that readers can get a good look at each cute creature. The facing page has a paragraph describing the animal and some of its characteristics. Below that is a cartoon depiction with a further point of interest or even a warning ("Watch Out- They Bite!" we learn about the quokka). And a sidebar lists the scientific name, size, diet, habitat, and predators or threats to the creature. This makes it easy to browse with a young animal lover who is only interested in the pictures and maybe a fact or two, or for older readers to take a deeper plunge into scientific details.

For elementary school classrooms and libraries that are searching for more books to satisfy their nonfiction readers, this series is a perfect addition. And for those readers who are willing to branch out into fiction with lots of animals in the stories, direct them to the author's My Life Is a Zoo middle grade series. I met Jess in person at NCTE and she is just as much fun as her books!


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