A barrage of dino names and facts, with fanciful cartoon illustrations.
Between a cardboard magnifying glass taped onto the front cover and a board game (requiring reader-supplied dice and tokens) on the rear, Li scatters flat images of brightly colored dinosaurs, along with blocks of commentary that, except for some with numbers, are placed in no apparent order. The writing is amateurish (“Pterosaurs are one of the most filmed creatures of this time.” Say what?). Having set the bar for accuracy low at the outset by explaining fossilization using the “bones” of a prehistoric squid, the author goes on to present a mix of common facts and wrong or unsubstantiated information such as claims that T. Rex tails may have been too heavy to lift, that brachiosaurus was the heaviest dino, and that the duck-billed platypus is a Mesozoic relic. The stylized human figures scrambling through each scene do sport a variety of skin colors, but they are not consistently drawn to scale and are sometimes oddly placed (shredding foliage in a brachiosaur’s stomach, for instance). The science activity at the end suggests making “fossils” by burying chicken bones or toys in rubble and then digging them up.
Dinosaur fans will have no trouble digging up better surveys. (glossary, quiz) (Informational picture book. 6-8)