This book is so good that it is unfortunate its format is so forbidding that many youngsters who would find it fascinating reading may pass it up. The black background of the jacket, the heavy black type and line drawing reproductions, the rather long type line all contribute to this impression. But don't overlook it, for this does successfully what many other books have attempted and failed to do. It introduces the lower animals, the ""animals without backbones"" (jellyfish and worms, insects and squids, forerunners of animals living today). Though there is a chapter on fossil animals this is not a book about prehistoric animals (see P. 753 for that) but rather a sort of first book of zoology. Good science at about fourth and sixth grade level.