Desert Animals

9781625880703. ea vol: 24p. (Safari Sam's Wild Animals). photos. Smart Apple. 2016. lib. ed. $18.95. ebk. $27.10.
Gr 2–4—Grouped by habitat, these profiles examine each animal with three levels of textual information per spread. A few large-font sentences provide the basics about the animal. A row of colored icons are captioned with small-print data on five areas: food, location, size, classification, and "Interesting Facts." Finally, a cartoon illustration of a character named Safari Sam offers one more tidbit. These are all laid out around a single large photo of the animal, neatly set off against a solid white background. It's an inviting look that presents an appealing level of written and visual material without daunting younger readers. Though some of the data relates directly to the animal's environment, the focus is on animals, rather than habitat. While the facts stick to broad views of the animal group, many captions identify the species of the pictured animals.
VERDICT High appeal for browsers.
Each book introduces ten species with a single photo of the animal (on a white background, not in its habitat) and texts in layers of reading difficulty. Basic facts appear in large font; more-in-depth details linked to color-coded icons (for diet, location, size, etc.) appear in smaller, pale print; and chibi cartoon "Safari Sam" offers random factual asides. Overall, this presentation is disjointed. Glos., ind. Review covers these Safari Sam's Wild Animals titles: Desert Animals, Freshwater Animals, Jungle Animals, Mountain Animals, Ocean Animals, and Polar Animals.

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