Find Out About Animal Babies

Candlewick. Apr. 2022. 32p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781536220469.
K-Gr 2–The title of this book tells readers exactly what to expect. Conservation biologist Jenkins chronicles myriad ways animal babies are raised in the wild. The broad range of animals featured include aquatic, land-dwelling, mammal, amphibian, marsupial, and insect. All examples are paired with their opposites: big babies/small babies, large groups/solo animal parents, and so on. Jenkins’s differentiated text makes this book an excellent read-aloud and accessible to readers of varying skill levels. Each animal is introduced by a simple statement in large bold text. Optional text, with longer sentences and more complicated vocabulary, accompanies each example to provide more details. McGuinness’s charming mixed-media illustrations are full of soft colors and fine lines. Her artwork makes all the animals appear sweet and friendly. Even the trypophobia-triggering Surinam toad looks downright cute. Back matter features an index of animals and an author’s note about the cold reality of life in the wild: some animal babies do not survive. However, the book ends on a hopeful note that the circle of life always finds a way to keep turning.
VERDICT Full of unique facts and appeal for a wide range of ages, this book is a welcome addition to most shelves.

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