Books by Valarie Giogas

IN MY BACKYARD by Valarie Giogas
ANIMALS
Released: June 1, 2007

Giogas's debut is a nature counting book that teaches young childen the names of animals' young, as well as what to call a group of that animal. "In my backyard I can see / groups of baby animals / all around me. / They creep, they crawl, they run, and hide. / They munch, they crunch, they sleep outside." From a prickle of two pups (porcupines) to a surfeit of seven kits (skunks), she highlights both the usual and the unusual. Readers will learn an interesting fact about each: eating habits, habitat and adaptations. Zecca's softly colored illustrations portray realistic-looking animals. Each page features one larger picture in which to find and count the babies, and smaller pictures that are close-ups, or that show the animal in their home or backyard setting. Backmatter includes animal cards to photocopy or download, a summary page showing where each of the baby animals is hiding, signs that animals are around, information on caring for wildlife and steps to take if you find an injured animal. While the rhythms of the verses are not always lyrical, young naturalists will nonetheless enjoy this one, especially since Pam Muñoz Ryan's A Pinky is a Baby Mouse (1997) is out of print. (Picture book. 3-7)Read full book review >