From the Animal Anatomy and Adaptations series

Another solid addition to Holland’s series.

Holland’s latest in the Animal Anatomy and Adaptations series looks at how animals use their noses.

Noses in the animal kingdom are used for more than just smelling and breathing: They are also useful for finding food and mates, avoiding predators, and navigating. A star-nosed mole wiggles the feelers on its nose to locate earthworms underground; a frog can find its home by smell; and a snake collects particles on its tongue and uses the Jacobson’s organ on the roof of its mouth to identify the smells. A wide range of animals is presented here, not all of them with true noses, which the author points out. For instance, birds breathe and smell through nostrils just above their beaks (different species’ senses of smell vary), and insects breathe through spiricles and smell with antennae. Some facts will amaze: Polar bears can smell seals through 3 feet of ice, and beavers’ noses close when underwater. Backmatter includes an explanation of the sense of smell (written at a significantly higher reading level than the primary text), more fun facts, and two matching/identify activities. As with Holland’s previous examinations of animals’ parts, the close-up photos are the main attraction. Vocabulary is defined in the text, which is mainly written for younger readers, with questions to get them engaged, shorter sentences, and simple vocabulary (“peeing and pooping”).

Another solid addition to Holland’s series. (Nonfiction. 3-9)

Pub Date: Feb. 10, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-60718-805-6

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Arbordale Publishing

Review Posted Online: Nov. 25, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 2018


A gleeful game for budding naturalists.

Artfully cropped animal portraits challenge viewers to guess which end they’re seeing.

In what will be a crowd-pleasing and inevitably raucous guessing game, a series of close-up stock photos invite children to call out one of the titular alternatives. A page turn reveals answers and basic facts about each creature backed up by more of the latter in a closing map and table. Some of the posers, like the tail of an okapi or the nose on a proboscis monkey, are easy enough to guess—but the moist nose on a star-nosed mole really does look like an anus, and the false “eyes” on the hind ends of a Cuyaba dwarf frog and a Promethea moth caterpillar will fool many. Better yet, Lavelle saves a kicker for the finale with a glimpse of a small parasitical pearlfish peeking out of a sea cucumber’s rear so that the answer is actually face and butt. “Animal identification can be tricky!” she concludes, noting that many of the features here function as defenses against attack: “In the animal world, sometimes your butt will save your face and your face just might save your butt!” (This book was reviewed digitally.)

A gleeful game for budding naturalists. (author’s note) (Informational picture book. 6-8)

Pub Date: July 11, 2023

ISBN: 9781728271170

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Sourcebooks eXplore

Review Posted Online: May 9, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2023



A good choice for a late fall storytime.

Animal behaviors change as they prepare to face the winter.

Migrate, hibernate, or tolerate. With smooth rhymes and jaunty illustrations, Salas and Gévry introduce three strategies animals use for coping with winter cold. The author’s long experience in imparting information to young readers is evident in her selection of familiar animals and in her presentation. Spread by spread she introduces her examples, preparing in fall and surviving in winter. She describes two types of migration: Hummingbirds and monarchs fly, and blue whales travel to the warmth of the south; earthworms burrow deeper into the earth. Without using technical words, she introduces four forms of hibernation—chipmunks nap and snack; bears mainly sleep; Northern wood frogs become an “icy pop,” frozen until spring; and normally solitary garter snakes snuggle together in huge masses. Those who can tolerate the winter still change behavior. Mice store food and travel in tunnels under the snow; moose grow a warmer kind of fur; the red fox dives into the snow to catch small mammals (like those mice); and humans put on warm clothes and play. The animals in the soft pastel illustrations are recognizable, more cuddly than realistic, and quite appealing; their habitats are stylized. The humans represent varied ethnicities. Each page includes two levels of text, and there’s further information in the extensive backmatter. Pair with Joyce Sidman and Rick Allen’s Winter Bees (2014).

A good choice for a late fall storytime. (glossary) (Informational picture book. 3-7)

Pub Date: Sept. 3, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5415-2900-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Millbrook/Lerner

Review Posted Online: June 15, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2019

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