FICTION

A Different Story

Eerdmans. Sept. 2019. 32p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780802855275.
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K-Gr 2–“There are moments when the world feels small.” And there are other times when it feels enormous. The lyrical narrative introduces a series of contrasting ideas, punctuated and enhanced by alternating illustrations of a rhinoceros and a rhinoceros beetle. “Sometimes we sink” as the rhino does in water, but sometimes, like the flying beetle, “we soar.” As different as the creatures are, they have much in common and are “…so similar.” Gentle and poetic text is complemented by highly textured, lush, and ideally placed collage illustrations. The uncluttered compositions focus readers’ eyes on differing perspectives to illuminate the concept. A brief endnote highlights the similarities between the rhinoceros and the beetle bearing its name for a truly unique look at both in the natural world. Serra closes with the reminder that “the rhinoceros and the rhinoceros beetle share the same planet, just as we all do.”
VERDICT This handsome, thoughtful book will be valuable in school and public libraries for not only a poetic look at similarities and differences, but also to spark curiosity about the animals and nature.

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