Handsome illustrations and a colorful cover are not enough to make this title in the Young Discoveries Library a useful...

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INCREDIBLE CREATURES

Handsome illustrations and a colorful cover are not enough to make this title in the Young Discoveries Library a useful purchase. Odd--and not-so-odd--creatures are presented in spreads with large full-color glossy drawings, with one main paragraph each and several descriptive captions. The text is banal and adds little to understanding: ""Black rhinos puff like steam engines when they charge at their enemies,"" and ""pacific hagfish can tie themselves into knots to wriggle out of an enemy's grasp."" Unrelated animals are grouped together under headings such as ""Armed for Life"" (armadillos and turtles) and ""In the Air"" (the focus is on bats, but a squirrel glider is pictured because it ""does not have wings like a bat""). A howler monkey is paired with a troop of ring-tailed lemurs. The text for ""Tusks and Horns"" indicates that a rhinoceros has a horn made of keratin (which will grow back if cut off), a walrus has unusual teeth called tusks, two male narwhals may cross their tusks like swords, and a unicorn is an imaginary horse with a horn on its head. Intended for young children, this collection is more confusing than enlightening.

Pub Date: Feb. 1, 1997

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Time-Life

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 1996