Illus. in full color. A scintillating survey of sensational serpents, from blood-spewing West Indian boas to "flying" golden tree snakes.
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Lucille Recht Penner is the author of many nonfiction books for kids, including Dinosaur Babies and Monster Bugs in Random House’s Step into Reading program. She lives in Tucson, Arizona.
Peter Barrett is a wildlife artist and illustrator with more than 40 credits to his name. In addition to his books based in nature, Barrett is also an extremely successful children's writer. His wildlife paintings have given him great fame and renown and have been exhibited around the world.
Grade 1-3?This slim introduction offers barely enough information to whet one's appetite. Penner opens with a brief explanation of how an Indian snake charmer "charms" a cobra, and alludes to snakes in mythology and ancient history. The minimal text then describes some of the major physical and behavioral characteristics common to all snakes?diet, various hunting and feeding methods, birth of young?and special characteristics of assorted species. Full-color drawings of 30 representative species from around the world accompany each page of text. While they are adequate depictions, those of humans are mediocre; most of the children look like short adults. Although the book is clearly written, it suffers from poor organization; topics are addressed in random order. Also, the coverage is superficial. Descriptions of anatomy, methods of locomotion, and growth and development are particularly sketchy. Patricia Lauber's Snakes Are Hunters (Crowell, 1988) and Seymour Simon's Snakes (HarperCollins, 1992) provide more in-depth information on the same subject; the latter title also offers superb photography that gives a truer sense of the nature of snakes.?Karey Wehner, San Francisco Public Library
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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