The sequel to Zucchini (1984) finds the ferret, his owner, Billy, and Billy's father and sister driving to Wyoming, where they plan to visit the captive breeding program for the endangered black-footed ferret. But ten-year-old Billy, a worrier in the best of times, has a serious concern: Zucchini looks like a black-footed ferret, and if he is identified as one, Billy won't be allowed to keep him. This gentle book is marred only by the presence of Billy's annoying five-year-old sister, Emma, whose comments are sometimes precocious and make her sound old, but she can't count, doesn't read, and behaves likes a three- year-old. Otherwise the story is a delight, especially the careful line Dana walks—as she did in the first book—in anthropomorphizing Zucchini, whose behavior is animal, but whose ``thoughts'' are open to readers. The result is an even greater, and rather touching, enhancement of the child-pet bond. Pleasant black-and-white illustrations add to this charming book, which has a great deal of information for animal-loving and environmentally aware children. (Fiction. 8-10)

Pub Date: June 11, 1997

ISBN: 0-06-024897-1

Page Count: 145

Publisher: HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 1997

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McDonald’s irrepressible third-grader (Judy Moody Gets Famous, 2001, etc.) takes a few false steps before hitting full stride. This time, not only has her genius little brother Stink submitted a competing entry in the Crazy Strips Band-Aid design contest, but in the wake of her science teacher’s heads-up about rainforest destruction and endangered animals, she sees every member of her family using rainforest products. It’s all more than enough to put her in a Mood, which gets her in trouble at home for letting Stink’s pet toad, Toady, go free, and at school for surreptitiously collecting all the pencils (made from rainforest cedar) in class. And to top it off, Stink’s Crazy Strips entry wins a prize, while she gets . . . a certificate. Chronicled amusingly in Reynolds’s frequent ink-and-tea drawings, Judy goes from pillar to post—but she justifies the pencil caper convincingly enough to spark a bottle drive that nets her and her classmates not only a hundred seedling trees for Costa Rica, but the coveted school Giraffe Award (given to those who stick their necks out), along with T-shirts and ice cream coupons. Judy’s growing corps of fans will crow “Rare!” right along with her. (Fiction. 8-10)

Pub Date: Aug. 1, 2002

ISBN: 0-7636-1446-7

Page Count: 160

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2002

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For shark fanciers, a look at a Los Angeles Natural History Museum exhibit, Sharks: Fact and Fantasy. Now touring the country, it includes models of large and small sharks, many of them swimming in simulated undersea settings. The text follows a group of young museum-goers as they examine shark teeth, fossil sharks, sharks in art, and a living shark embryo; shark anatomy, special adaptations, types of sharks, and some shark facts are also included. Photos are clear, colorful and engaging. Not comprehensive, but an attractive added purchase. Pronunciation guide; additional reading; index. (Nonfiction. 8-10)

Pub Date: Sept. 23, 1991

ISBN: 0-395-57560-5

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Clarion Books

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1991

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