In this oversized album, 11 frogs from around the world exemplify the varied ways frogs find enough moisture to keep themselves and their eggs and tadpoles alive.
“Frogs have a song” Guiberson reminds readers. From the “PSSST-PSSST” of the strawberry poison dart frog in the rain forest to the “BRACKBRACK!” of the wood frog in a bog, spread by spread she introduces readers to both songs and singers. Short paragraphs ring variations on the theme of frog life and reproduction. In Oklahoma, the Great Plains narrow-mouthed toad shares a damp burrow with a tarantula. The swamp-dwelling Surinam toad carries eggs under her skin. In a Chilean forest, Darwin's frog keeps his tadpoles in his vocal sacs. Spirin's detailed paintings, done with tempera, watercolor and pencil in a realistic palette of greens and browns, show frogs in their surroundings, blending in and yet standing out, poised to leap off the page. Finally, “A frog song is a celebration of clean water, plants, and insects to eat.” This message is followed by two pages of fast facts about the species described in prose and illustrated with thumbnails—but, alas, there are no maps. There’s also a reminder that frogs today are in trouble and a bibliography including both children’s and adult books and websites.
Another harmonious salute to the natural world by an accomplished pair. (Informational picture book. 4-9)