AMAZING ANIMALS by Liza Charlesworth


From the "Spin & Spot" series
by ; illustrated by
Age Range: 2 - 4
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Spin the dial to identify a variety of animals in different habitats.

Each double-page spread displays eight critters that live in one of eight environs, such as the suburbs (dubbed here “neighborhood”), a farm, the desert, the Arctic, and more. A relatively sturdy spin dial is embedded on every other page so youngsters can rotate the wheel and match small, one-color graphic depictions to larger, full-color images of each creature in the picture. A white band at the bottom of each spread includes a label for the habitat, a couple of sentences of text, and the repeated invitation to spot all eight animals. Reese’s art is clear and colorful, allowing for easy identification by toddlers. While the book has a nonfiction angle, the artist has taken some playful liberties in these scenes. A crab nips a fish’s tail for a tow through the ocean scene, while an elephant cheekily sprays a hippo in the savanna tableau. Happily, however, there is no sign of either a penguin or an igloo in the Arctic habitat. Many youngsters may be confused by the flat perspective and scale of these illustrations; a toucan looks larger than a jaguar in the rain-forest setting, a bear looks smaller than a skunk on the forest spread, and several creatures appear dangerously close to their predators.

Though not a perfect offering, the “Spin & Spot” gimmick and animal-identification game will engage most toddlers. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Jan. 31st, 2017
ISBN: 978-0-545-78383-5
Page count: 16pp
Publisher: Cartwheel/Scholastic
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1st, 2017


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