A fishy breakfast almost turns fatal for huge, winged Quetzalcoatlus—the Spruce Goose of the Late Cretaceous.
Inspired by the recent discovery of a fossil bone of the immense pterosaur (probably the largest flying creature who has ever lived, the author notes) scored with small tooth marks, the episode pairs a sketchy plot with eye-widening illustrations. Quetzalcoatlus lands by a stream and is attacked by a pack of needle-toothed raptor Saurornitholestes as a herd of Triceratops looks on in alarm. Placed in lifelike poses in front of or, in the better-fashioned scenes, within modern landscape photos, the prehistoric creatures sport feathers, wrinkles, teeth and scales that are all rendered with hyper-realistic clarity and sharpness. Despite the ferocity of the attack and references to bites and slashing claws, there is no blood or explicit violence to be seen, though extreme close-ups and low angles of view artfully capture the incident’s drama as well as Quetzalcoatlus’ awesome size.
Dino devotees may be disappointed by the lack of a bibliography, but they will devour this eye candy with relish. (afterword) (Picture book. 6-9)