THE DAY THE DINOSAURS DIED

Paleontologist Brown presents developing readers with a vividly imagined recreation of an asteroid impact and its immediate and subsequent effects on the dinosaurs. She sets up her scenario with an introductory, “It may have happened like this . . . ” and follows with action-filled narration that finds a T. rex peacefully chowing down on an Edmontosaurus while behind him a “strange new light” appears in the sky. After immediately incinerating the giant carnivore, the asteroid’s wave of destruction moves outward, mowing down Triceratops and Alamosaurus with equal abandon. Although they are not killed in the initial impact, a herd of Parasaurolophuses, who hide in caves in the far north, slowly starve to death upon reemerging into a blasted world. Clearly, there’s more than enough violence and destruction to delight the most jaded eight-year-old, all related in the simple and forthright vocabulary and syntax of an I Can Read! entry. Wilson’s illustrations add stripes and other splashes of color to the dinosaurs’ hides, as well as expressions of alarm to their faces, the scenes of destruction appropriately garish and full of motion. Sure to find its audience. (author’s note, pronunciation guide) (Easy reader/nonfiction. 6-9)

Pub Date: June 1, 2006

ISBN: 0-06-000528-9

Page Count: 48

Publisher: HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2006

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Gift items for confirmed young enthusiasts, with a substantial but not wearisome informational load.

DINOSAURS

From the Smithsonian Young Explorers series

In lunchbox-style packaging, a booklet of dino facts and a prehistoric panorama are presented on both a folded poster and a jigsaw puzzle.

Strother devotes 10 of her 32 pages to ornithischian, or bird-hipped, dinosaurs (correctly noting that they are not the ancestors of modern birds). She also manages to survey the Mesozoic Era in general, introduce a few theropods, describe fossilization, and present up-to-date information about dinosaur colors and extinction theories. All of this is crammed onto thematic spreads with small paintings and photos of fossils or generic images of fleshed-out reconstructions in minimally detailed settings. Francis contributes a collective portrait of dinosaurs of diverse size and period posing together over a labeled timeline. This can be hung up and, as a 130-piece jigsaw, assembled. Also available from the same author and illustrator, and likewise in a round-corned box with a carrying handle and snap close, is Oceans, a densely populated dive into the deep.

Gift items for confirmed young enthusiasts, with a substantial but not wearisome informational load. (Informational novelty. 6-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2014

ISBN: 978-1-62686-145-9

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Silver Dolphin

Review Posted Online: Oct. 6, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2014

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A bland but amiable iteration.

THE WONDROUS DINOSAURIUM

Yet another child learns that dinosaurs make exciting, if chancy, pets.

On the prowl for a pet, Danny walks past shop windows displaying puppies and kittens to enter the titular storefront…where “Mr. Ree, purveyor of prehistoric pets,” offers him any dino he might desire. Unfortunately his first pick, Diplodocus longus, eats half a ton of veggies per day; his second, Tyrannosaurus rex (“Ooh, brave choice”), is too, well, “drooly”; and later ones—unnamed but brightly patterned, smiling, and recognizably depicted in Brown’s cartoon scenes—prove likewise impractical or unsatisfactory. (Confirmed dinophiles might be able to tag the unidentified beasts, but there is no key for paleontological newbies.) Condon works the well-worn premise to a happy resolution, as the pet Danny finally brings home in a box turns out to be not an ordinary tortoise, as his mother thinks at first sight, but a spiky-tailed, tortoiselike Meiolania from the Middle Miocene, small enough to pick up…at first, anyway. Aside from a background figure in one scene, the human cast is uniformly white. José Carlos Andrés and Ana Sanfelippo’s Adopting a Dinosaur (2019), Jason Cockcroft’s How To Take Care of Your Dinosaur (2019), and Diego Vaisberg’s Dino (2018) are but three recent examples of the superior treatments available.

A bland but amiable iteration. (Picture book. 6-8)

Pub Date: April 7, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-84886-474-0

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Maverick Publishing

Review Posted Online: Dec. 18, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2020

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