It’s Tough to Be Tiny

Nobrow/Flying Eye Bks./. Sept. 2022. 48p. Tr $20.99. ISBN 9781838748531.
K-Gr 3–The smallest creatures have numerous challenges to their survival: larger predators, getting squashed, and struggling to get their own food, just for starters. While their small size may make them seem particularly vulnerable, they have an array of impressive defensive traits and hunting techniques. These creatures have developed defenses such as armor, camouflage, and impressive jumping, and weapons such as toxic darts and sticky goo traps, that allow them to thrive. While the majority are insects and arachnids, a variety of aquatic and microscopic life-forms are featured as well. Creatures are organized by survival trait, allowing readers to draw connections between different species: for instance, both sea slugs and landlocked millipedes shoot toxins at predators. Dense informative text is paired with detailed, realistic drawings of small creatures living within their habitats. Employing illustrations instead of photographs enables the portrayal of each protective trait in action and the seamless inclusion of diagrams and sequential panels to aid in comprehension. A wealth of facts is offered about each creature, including quite a few gross bits (e.g., the beetle that hides in its own poop). While the denseness of the text and some advanced vocabulary may prove challenging to some, compelling material and an energetic tone will draw readers in.
VERDICT This illustrated celebration of small but mighty and sometimes ferocious creatures is recommended for general purchase.

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