TURTLE POND by James Gladstone


by ; illustrated by
Age Range: 4 - 8
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The mysteries of turtles come to life.

Descriptive, thought-provoking text and colorful, detailed watercolors combine to show the lives of members of a single species (the red-eared slider) that live inside some public gardens “in hidden corners / and secret hollows / beneath the wet rocks, / way at the bottom of turtle pond.” From season to season, a child and an adult man observe from the background as the turtles swim about. The text neatly and naturally notes various behaviors (underwater breathing, eating, interacting with fish, slow exploration, basking in sunlight, stacking themselves into piles, poking their heads in and out of their shells, sleeping on rocks, dwelling near the bottom of the pond) in accessible language and with interesting specifics. The brief descriptions seem likely to lead to more questions than actual answers, presumably so that young scientists may investigate further themselves, making this a good choice to get readers and listeners thinking and observing. Endnotes provide additional information on the particular species, the general status of turtles worldwide, and the author’s source of inspiration. The book’s focal characters have dark hair and light skin.

A poetic yet informative introduction to the lives of turtles that will motivate children to find out more. (Informational picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: May 1st, 2018
ISBN: 978-1-55498-910-2
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Groundwood
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1st, 2018


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