FACE TO FACE WITH FROGS

Biologist Moffett describes some unusual frogs he has met on assignment for National Geographic magazine. The striking illustrations are primarily his own color photographs, most from Central and South America and Vietnam. The casual browser will be immediately drawn in by the opening description of watching a Columbian teenager poison a dart with secretions from a frog’s skin to kill a peccary. Moffett explains the difference between toads and other frogs and describes the change from tadpole to adult before returning to his description of atypical frogs, focusing especially on the Puerto Rican coqui. Finally, in a chapter curiously called “Deadly Frogs,” he tells how dart frogs are exceptionally good mothers. Sidebars and endmatter add facts, information about environmental threats and suggestions for readers who want to study frogs in the wild. A map shows the global home of the frogs pictured (except for the one in Massachusetts, which actually originates in Korea). Like others in the Face to Face series, this is more useful for encouraging the sense of wonder than for research. (glossary, bibliography, index) (Nonfiction. 7-10)

Pub Date: Feb. 12, 2008

ISBN: 978-1-4263-0205-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: National Geographic

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2008

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MR. POPPER'S PENGUINS

This is rather a silly story, and I don't believe children will think it particularly funny. A paper hanger and painter finds time on his hands in winter, and spends it in reading of arctic exploration. It is all given reality when he receives a present of a penguin, which makes its nest in the refrigerator on cubes of ice, mates with a lonely penguin from the zoo, and produces a family of penguins which help set the Poppers on their feet.

Pub Date: Sept. 26, 1938

ISBN: 978-0-316-05843-8

Page Count: 139

Publisher: Little, Brown

Review Posted Online: Jan. 15, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1938

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MERCY WATSON THINKS LIKE A PIG

Mercy Watson, beloved porcine wonder, meets Francine Poulet, “the best animal control officer in the history of the world.” When Mercy discovers freshly planted pansies next door, what can she do but eat them? Never mind that the pansies belong to the next-door neighbors, pig-loving Baby and her pig-hating sister, Eugenia. When the furious Eugenia sees the incriminating pansy petals on Mercy’s chin, her anger gets the best of her and she reports Mercy to Animal Control. The officer, beak-nosed Poulet, is energized by the challenge of adding a new animal to her life capture list. DiCamillo’s comic timing coupled with Van Dusen’s familiar, over-the-top gouache depictions of the emotional Mercy and her caring, buttered-toast-bearing “parents” make this a welcome addition to the popular series. Fifteen very short action-packed chapters make this a fine step up for readers ready for a slightly more challenging read than Henry and Mudge. (Fiction. 7-10)

Pub Date: July 1, 2008

ISBN: 978-0-7636-3265-6

Page Count: 80

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2008

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