Excellent writing and documentation distinguish Markle’s latest.

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THE GREAT LEOPARD RESCUE

SAVING THE AMUR LEOPARDS

Markle introduces the critically endangered Amur leopard, detailing current strategies to augment its numbers using temporarily relocated, zooborn cats.

From a 1950s population of around 2,400, the leopard dwindled to about 30 by 2007, despite increasing conservation efforts by such international groups as the Amur Leopard and Tiger Alliance. Markle presents the Amur leopard’s native habitat, eastern Russia's taiga, or boreal forest. She shows the effects of modern logging, mining, farming, and hunting on a rugged region that previously favored the leopard’s large, solitary home ranges and ample access to prey. In 2010, an international coalition began planning for a second, backup population of Amur leopards, recognizing that the remaining cats could be wiped out by disease or disaster. Russia protected the leopards’ last natural habitat in 2012, later designating separate taiga land for the spare population. Markle’s crisp prose conveys the extensive scientific and technological steps needed to ensure that zooborn adult leopards could mate in large enclosures, with mothers teaching their young to hunt. After two years, cubs would enter their wild habitat, with mothers returned to their zoos. Clear, often riveting stock photos show adult cats and cubs in natural habitats as well as zoos, and maps are effectively utilized. Markle invites readers to track the evolving progress of the plan to help the Amur leopard survive.

Excellent writing and documentation distinguish Markle’s latest. (author’s note, additional facts, timeline, glossary, quotation sources, annotated list of web and print resources, index, photo credits) (Nonfiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-4677-9247-9

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Millbrook/Lerner

Review Posted Online: July 20, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2016

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With Ivan’s movie out this year from Disney, expect great interest—it will be richly rewarded.

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THE ONE AND ONLY BOB

Tiny, sassy Bob the dog, friend of The One and Only Ivan (2012), returns to tell his tale.

Wisecracking Bob, who is a little bit Chihuahua among other things, now lives with his girl, Julia, and her parents. Happily, her father works at Wildworld Zoological Park and Sanctuary, the zoo where Bob’s two best friends, Ivan the gorilla and Ruby the elephant, live, so Bob gets to visit and catch up with them regularly. Due to an early betrayal, Bob doesn’t trust humans (most humans are good only for their thumbs); he fears he’s going soft living with Julia, and he’s certain he is a Bad Dog—as in “not a good representative of my species.” On a visit to the zoo with a storm threatening, Bob accidentally falls into the gorilla enclosure just as a tornado strikes. So that’s what it’s like to fly. In the storm’s aftermath, Bob proves to everyone (and finally himself) that there is a big heart in that tiny chest…and a brave one too. With this companion, Applegate picks up where her Newbery Medal winner left off, and fans will be overjoyed to ride along in the head of lovable, self-deprecating Bob on his storm-tossed adventure. His wry doggy observations and attitude are pitch perfect (augmented by the canine glossary and Castelao’s picture dictionary of dog postures found in the frontmatter). Gorilla Ivan described Julia as having straight, black hair in the previous title, and Castelao's illustrations in that volume showed her as pale-skinned. (Finished art not available for review.)

With Ivan’s movie out this year from Disney, expect great interest—it will be richly rewarded. (afterword) (Fiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: May 5, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-06-299131-7

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Harper/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: March 25, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2020

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The three way chats, in which they are joined by other animals, about web spinning, themselves, other humans—are as often...

CHARLOTTE'S WEB

A successful juvenile by the beloved New Yorker writer portrays a farm episode with an imaginative twist that makes a poignant, humorous story of a pig, a spider and a little girl.

Young Fern Arable pleads for the life of runt piglet Wilbur and gets her father to sell him to a neighbor, Mr. Zuckerman. Daily, Fern visits the Zuckermans to sit and muse with Wilbur and with the clever pen spider Charlotte, who befriends him when he is lonely and downcast. At the news of Wilbur's forthcoming slaughter, campaigning Charlotte, to the astonishment of people for miles around, spins words in her web. "Some Pig" comes first. Then "Terrific"—then "Radiant". The last word, when Wilbur is about to win a show prize and Charlotte is about to die from building her egg sac, is "Humble". And as the wonderful Charlotte does die, the sadness is tempered by the promise of more spiders next spring.

The three way chats, in which they are joined by other animals, about web spinning, themselves, other humans—are as often informative as amusing, and the whole tenor of appealing wit and pathos will make fine entertainment for reading aloud, too.

Pub Date: Oct. 15, 1952

ISBN: 978-0-06-026385-0

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Harper/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: Sept. 14, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 1952

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