Swenson's separate short sketches of crickets, rabbits, snakes, snails, and twelve other small animals are of marginal interest considering the wealth of available alternatives. A few of his statements are carelessly worded--for example, ""When they are still young and wingless, fireflies are called larvae"" (only fireflies?) and ""Land turtles, or tortoises, are reptiles without a central heating system. In other words, they are 'cold-blooded' . . ."" (unlike other reptiles?). Otherwise the writing is unobjectionable but flat, the advice on making pets of some of the subjects is spotty, and the summary-style coverage (e.g., four very nonspecific sentences on the firefly's bioluminescence) is unstimulating.