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ARE THE DINOSAURS DEAD, DAD? by Julie Middleton

ARE THE DINOSAURS DEAD, DAD?

By Julie Middleton (Author) , Russell Ayto (Illustrator)

Age Range: 6 - 8

Pub Date: March 1st, 2013
ISBN: 978-1-56145-690-1
Publisher: Peachtree

What do parents know? When it comes to dinosaurs, maybe not as much as they think.

Squiring young Dave through the museum’s dino exhibits, Dad condescendingly laughs off his son’s anxious queries about why they’re winking, grinning and even trying to snatch his burger as figments of an active imagination. Until, that is, one final question—“Then why is that one following us, Dad?”—sparks a cogent parental response: “Run, Dave, RUN!!” Ayto provides labels with pronunciation keys for each exhibit, but rather than depict the fat-bodied, skinny-limbed dinos as fossil skeletons, he fleshes them out with brightly colored hides and toothily predatory expressions. He goes nuts with perspective and scale, depicting a gigantic Tyrannosaurus snout squeezing its way through a doorway—the cracks in the marble bode ill for its structural integrity—while a tiny “In case of emergency break glass” to the side demonstrates just how futile modern protections will be.

The final view of that T. Rex towering over the two fleeing humans bodes ill for Dad. Maybe he should have paid closer attention to what his offspring was telling him. (Picture book. 6-8)