Who goes there?
Readers must guess which creatures left their distinctive tracks behind in this fact-filled book. On the verso page of each spread, the question reads, “Whose footprint is that?” and a clue to the maker of the print appears with a snippet of its anatomy—e.g., snout, ears, tail, feather, even, in one case, a section of a body. The recto page displays the print or prints with a sentence or two explaining how the tracks were produced. A page turn yields another spread and the answer: a portrait of the mystery animal and some interesting facts about its feet. A very ancient track maker is included, too. A tantalizing puzzle challenges kids at the end: “Can an animal change its footprints?” Adult readers would do well to let a few moments elapse while children ponder responses before they turn the page and reveal the answer—and another brainteaser. This charmer will hold young children’s interest and will succeed one-on-one or as a group read-aloud. It will help develop vocabulary as youngsters learn new words including “wallaroo” and “slithering.” The gouache illustrations are appealing. Tracks are large enough to be seen well (and, possibly, traced with little fingers), and their makers are portrayed along with glimpses into their habitats, with furry, feathered, and scaly charms charmingly intact.
Kids will make tracks to this one—and likely step up for repeat visits. (Informational picture book. 3-7)