Otherwise, a handsome and useful work.

READ REVIEW

SMALL AND TALL TALES OF EXTINCT ANIMALS

Vanished animals from around the world, 26 extinct and one sole survivor, are here displayed on oversized pages in a beautifully designed album.

This French import (by way of New Zealand) is an appealing combination of fact and fancy. Each animal is presented on a double-page spread. On the left, a series of often humorous cartoon panels describe tradition and myth. On the right, under the English and Latin names and a short descriptive paragraph, a single, large panel shows the creature in a natural context. These images have flat, muted colors and carefully inked details. A medallion with fast facts and silhouettes shows the animal in comparison to humans, and insets on the main image add further information. Organized into four general areas, the Americas, Africa, Eurasia and Oceania, these animals appear again at the end in four panels of a frieze, chronologically according to their disappearance, from 15,000 years ago to today. Silhouettes grace the endpapers and an opening world map as well. From the Australian long-beaked echidna to the Galápagos tortoise called Lonesome George (the "sole survivor," now, sadly, deceased), the range is impressive. (Two unfortunate errors early in the book will surprise American readers: the claims that humans arrived in the Americas only 10,000 years ago and that the Bering Strait separates that landmass from Europe.)

Otherwise, a handsome and useful work. (Nonfiction. 9-15)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2012

ISBN: 978-1-877579-06-6

Page Count: 78

Publisher: Gecko Press

Review Posted Online: Aug. 1, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2012

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An alternative to the shelf full of picture-book biographies, for readers who may find Sheila Cole’s Dragon in the Cliff,...

MARY ANNING'S CURIOSITY

Carved out and buffed up from historical records, an imagined account of the great fossil hunter’s early life and groundbreaking career.

Following an account of the lightning strike that killed several adults but spared the 15-month-old Mary, Kulling skips ahead to record the child’s deep delight at getting a rock hammer for her eighth birthday. Between that and Anning’s laborious extraction of a great ichthyosaur skeleton at age 12, in 1811, the author chronicles her sometimes-hazardous search for fossil ammonites and other “curiosities” (as they were then called) to sell as the family livelihood—first with her father and then, after his disabling accident and early death, largely alone. Period details of everyday life in Lyme Regis, both in the narrative and in Castrillón’s delicate illustrations, and embroidered encounters with rival fossil hunters and collectors flesh out the story; notes at the end wire together explanations of what fossils are with descriptions of some of Anning’s other discoveries and their subsequent histories. Though here at least she seems almost relieved to quit school at the earliest opportunity to pursue her vocation, Mary presents an admirable role model for her lively mind, independent spirit, and a continuing sense of wonder that drives her to chip away at nature’s mysteries.

An alternative to the shelf full of picture-book biographies, for readers who may find Sheila Cole’s Dragon in the Cliff, illustrated by T.C. Farrow (1991) hard to read or get. (bibliography) (Historical fiction. 9-11)

Pub Date: May 16, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-55498-898-3

Page Count: 156

Publisher: Groundwood

Review Posted Online: Feb. 1, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2017

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A decent finish featuring plenty of action and lots of dinos—the latter furnishing not only thrills, but both bacon and eggs...

CODE NAME FLOOD

From the Edge of Extinction series , Vol. 2

Sky’s search for her long-missing father becomes a race against time following the discovery of a scheme to reclaim Earth’s surface from the resurgent dinosaurs—with nukes.

Rightly thinking that the environmental effects of a nuclear apocalypse would wipe out the last surviving remnants of humanity too, Sky leads a seemingly quixotic attempt to infect the tech of the plan’s brutal but charismatic architect, a political boss known as “the Noah,” with toxic software. But getting to his headquarters beneath shattered New York’s Grand Central Station requires making her way through multiple betrayals, shootings, subway tunnels, firefights, and explosions. And that’s not to mention the frequent, terrifying (if low on explicit gore) encounters with hosts of prehistoric creatures—from Dracorex hogwartsia and rhinolike pentaceratops to predatory carnotaurus, plesiosaurs, condorraptors, and troodons. Red-haired, white Sky needs rescuing a little too often this time around to come off quite as tough and resilient as in the opening episode, and like allies Shawn (the brilliant white hacker) and Todd (the hunky white survivalist), those around her are by and large typecast sorts.

A decent finish featuring plenty of action and lots of dinos—the latter furnishing not only thrills, but both bacon and eggs for a closing breakfast. (afterword) (Science fiction. 11-13)

Pub Date: May 30, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-06-241625-4

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Harper/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: Feb. 1, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2017

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