This oversized board book highlights both familiar and unusual animals in a variety of habitats.
Fans of Richard Scarry will feel an instant affinity for this ambitious effort, in which each impressive double-page spread offers a panoramic view of a particular region of the world. The scenes are populated by endearing cartoon mice and dotted with some recognizable icons to suggest general location (though, regrettably, the regions are not explicitly identified). Above and around each landscape are drawings of animals that can be found in that particular region. Each spread includes around 20 animals, from the typical, such as the peacock and orangutan, to the relatively unusual, like the Komodo dragon, the wombat, and the kiwi. The title’s only text consists of labels for all of the animals as well as certain elements of the landscape, such as, for example, “volcano” and “big city.” Refreshingly, none of the landscapes is exoticized: evidence of modern human habitation and industry exist side by side with the iconically picturesque. Readers will enjoy seeing familiar and new animals in the context of their habitats, as well as following the antics of the busy little mice, two of whom can be found in every region, riding in a yellow hot air balloon and gazing out over the wonderful world below.
This is one to pore over—visually appealing, intellectually satisfying, and fun to boot. (Board book. 2-5)