Thomas the T. Rex

The Journey of a Young Dinosaur to Los Angeles
Gr 3—5—Cousins Thomas and Rita love dinosaurs, and they enjoy meeting at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County Junior Scientist Club. While the members are on a field trip to the Montana badlands, Thomas discovers a Tyrannosaurus rex fossil. It takes three summers to excavate and six years to reconstruct the dinosaur, and when all the work is completed, the skeleton becomes the focal point of the new dinosaur gallery since it is one of the most complete ones ever discovered. The text is full of facts about paleontology and digs, and the book ends with photographs and facts about the discovery. Unfortunately, the illustrations of the people are stiff and awkwardly rendered. A map has incorrect information, showing that the trip home goes through Idaho instead of Wyoming as the text states. At the end of the book, nine years have passed, but the children still look the same as at the beginning of the story. The tale of finding Thomas the T. rex is worth reading; the illustrations are disappointing.—Rachel Artley, Watertown Elementary School, TN
Junior Scientist Club members Thomas and Rita help paleontologists from the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County discover, excavate, transport, and assemble the fossilized skeleton of a Tyrannosaurus rex. Stiff, amateurish watercolors do little to enhance the overlong, plodding text. The appended photographs and notes outlining the museum's actual expedition are a lot more interesting.

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