DINOSAURS AT THE ENDS OF THE EARTH

THE STORY OF THE CENTRAL ASIATIC EXPEDITIONS

In 1922 Roy Chapman Andrews, noted dinosaur hunter from the Museum of Natural History, and a team of fossil hunters; set off for Outer Mongolia to discover evidence of human origin in Asia. Traveling the roadless Gobi desert by automobile, provisioned by caravans of camels, the paleontologists discovered not human remains, but dinosaurs and the first dinosaur eggs ever found. In this title, Floca (Five Trucks. 1999, etc.) takes the events and discoveries of the Central Asiatic Expedition and creates an `imagined or fictionalized` story. In doing so, he pioneers a new genre: historical science fiction. His writing, laced with actual events, invented dialogue and thoughts of the scientists, captures the quirky personalities of the hunters. But, it is the meticulously drawn watercolors which spark the imagination while enriching the text. Some of the most dramatic pages show the desert camp at night and the minute caravan winding its way through the vast sweep of the Gobi desert. The last page of text provides a time line and an afterward. Flap copy states that the author has done “extensive research for the book,” however there is no evidence or documentation to that effect. Difficult to place, since it is cataloged in nonfiction, but is filled with fiction, this will appeal to dinosaur fans willing to accept made-up conversations because the story is a compelling one. (Nonfiction. 10-12)

Pub Date: March 1, 2000

ISBN: 0-7894-2539-4

Page Count: 32

Publisher: DK Publishing

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2000

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

GIGANTIC!

HOW BIG WERE THE DINOSAURS?

O’Brien celebrates 14 prehistoric monsters by presenting each with a modern object or a human, thereby giving readers information about the size of these giants. Dinosaurs, in full-color and full-snarl, dominate the double-page layouts as they frolic and menace an airplane, fire truck, tank, automobile, and assorted people. For every creature, O’Brien provides the name, its meaning, and a brief line of text. Three of the creatures presented are not dinosaurs at all—Quetzalcoatlus, a pterosaur, Phobosuchus, a relative of the crocodiles, and Dinichthys, a bony fish—which the author mentions in the back matter. The illustrations are not drawn to scale, e.g., if Spinosaurus is really 49 feet long, as the text indicates, the car it is shown next to would appear to be 30 feet long. Readers may have to puzzle over a few scenes, but will enjoy browsing through this book, from the dramatic eyeball view of a toothy Tyrannosaurus rex on the cover to the final head-on glare from a Triceratops. (Picture book/nonfiction. 5-9)

Pub Date: April 1, 1999

ISBN: 0-8050-5738-2

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Henry Holt

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 1999

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

REIGN OF THE SEA DRAGONS

Despite occasional gore in the pictures and section headings like “Permian Wipeout” and “The Ichthyosaur Café,” this look at marine reptiles of the Mesozoic Era will have more appeal for serious young proto-paleontologists than fans of violent, bloody action. Taking up Ichthyosaurs, Plesiosaurs and Mosasaurs in turn, Collard describes what the fossil record tells scientists about the probable diets, habits and distinctive physical structures of each type of predator, then closes with speculations about why each became extinct. Along with full-page color portraits to open each chapter, Plant supplies delicately shaded, finely detailed pencil drawings that range from full fossil skeletons to close-ups of toothy heads and, startlingly, a gracefully drifting half-eaten plesiosaur. More detailed, if also more visually sedate, than Caroline Arnold’s Giant Sea Reptiles of the Dinosaur Age (2007), illustrated by Laurie Caple, this look at the animals that sat atop the oceanic food chain for tens of millions of years makes a solid addition to the dino-shelves. (Nonfiction. 10-12)

Pub Date: July 1, 2008

ISBN: 978-1-58089-124-0

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Charlesbridge

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2008

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more