Tiny Terrors!: The World’s Scariest Small Creatures

Penguin. (Penguin Young Readers, Level 4). Jul. 2022. 48p. Tr $15.99. ISBN 9780593383971; pap. $4.99. ISBN 9780593383964.
Gr 1-3–This quick read shares just the bare facts about these deadly critters’ size and manner of protecting themselves from predators or successfully attacking and killing their prey. An introductory letter to parents and teachers shares definitions of nonfiction and descriptive language, along with recommended activities. Then, each animal has a spread with clear illustrations from stock photos. Most of the creatures are lesser-known and vary in size: the Irukandji jellyfish is “about the size of your pinkie finger.” Meanwhile, the Brazilian wandering spider is five inches wide. Clarke writes a smooth patter with exclamations to spice up word choices: “Bam!” “Poof!” “Whap!” “Pow!” A map of the world at the end shows the animals and where they live, but the photos are too small to see distinctly. The absence of back matter means the title does not include source material, documentation, or author credentials.
VERDICT Not a first choice. Children who want a quick scare may enjoy this, but those who are proficient readers may find that this does not sustain their interest.

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