Soar High, Dragonfly!

Soar High, Dragonfly! illus. by Johnny Lambert. 32p. Sleeping Bear. Mar. 2019. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9781585364107.
PreS-Gr 3—Using narrative and thoughtful sidebars, this title follows the life cycle of the dragonfly. The cycle begins in spring with the laying of eggs by an adult dragonfly on a pond, (an interesting fact: some dragonflies lay their eggs inside plant stems for protection). It follows the cycle from egg to nymph to adult to mating. Dragonflies mate by holding onto each other in the shape of the letter "O" as they float through the air. It ends with autumn and the laying of new eggs. The sidebars are facts about dragonflies written in different fonts and colors and varying in location from top, bottom, and side. This format might be off-putting to younger readers as it looks like dense text, but the writing style makes the information accessible to all. Characteristics and terms that might be new to readers are defined within the text. While the narrative is often several sentences in block format, similar to the informational text, there are also pages with just a few enthusiastic words in large print: "Soar high, dragonfly!" for example. The illustrations are reminiscent of Eric Carle's brightly colored collages that jump off white backgrounds.
VERDICT This title could be used on many levels: very young audiences will enjoy as a picture book, while budding scientists will appreciate the narrative and informational text together. An excellent addition.

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