Curious Critters, Kids Book Review

leaping, flying, and coming your way! 

In his children’s picture book CURIOUS CRITTERS (November 2011, Wild Iris Publishing, hardcover, ages 4-8) photographer David FitzSimmons turns his camera on a variety of animals common throughout North America. CURIOUS CRITTERS presents stunning images of everyday animals, including a red flat bark beetle, an Eastern spiny softshell turtle, a spotted salamander, and many other intriguing creatures. Each Curious Critter is photographed against a white backdrop, showcasing the animals’ colors, textures, and shapes with precision and clarity. Along with each photo is a vignette, told from the critter’s perspective, that educates and entertains. For example, a bush katydid explains her bubblegum-pink color, a poetic opossum opines upon her often-shortened name, and a far-from-modest black swallowtail butterfly lets readers in on her secret for avoiding predators. When parents read CURIOUS CRITTERS with their kids not only will they have fun reading, but they also inspire in them a life-long interest in nature. Kids will want to swap TV and video games for a trips to the park or more time in the backyard. So, get ready to have a budding biologist on your hands! Just some of what kids will learn: What turtles and humans have in common Why black swallowtail butterflies impersonates their toxic cousins How Eastern box turtles can live longer than humans (over 150 years!) If squirrels can fly Why crayfish grow new legs How bats find food Why frogs sing How jumping spiders jump and why they never have to look over their shoulders.


My Thoughts:
We have a lot of kids books in our house. I mean like a LOT a lot. So it takes something special to really catch my eye in a book. But Curious Critters caught my eye quickly. With truly amazing photography the art/photo lover in me was inamored, while the mom in my knew my kids would love the animal facts. My boys are serious science lovers and learning all they can about a huge variety of animals is included in that love.  Sometimes though I find that the educational books about animals don’t make great read aloud (ie bedtime reading) books especially since we all read together.  This book however still has a fun light tone with a perfect amount of text on the page.  And the photos are so stunning and clear…well some of the photos had my littlest reader a tad freaked out.  The best part for me is the recap and activity stuff at the end.  Simple activities you can use to review the animals names, what type of animals/insect/etc they all are.  It’s the perfect interactive book that really can be used for little kids or big kids.  
Let me leave you with this furry little guy.  The detail in his (I’m just guessing its a him) photo is beyond amazing!  This simply isn’t the type of photography you seen in most books.

Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this beautiful book for review purposes but all opinions expressed are my own honest personal feedback.

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