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Dinosaurs!
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About the Author

Gail Gibbons has written and illustrated more than fifty titles for Holiday House. It is her curiosity for how nature works that has led her into such a successful career as a children's book author and illustrator. Before creating children's books, she worked for NBC television. She lives in Corinth, Vermont.

Reviews

PreS-Gr 2 Like Parish's Dinosaur Time (Harper, 1974), Gibbons introduces one or two dinosaurs per page, providing a few brief bits of information about each creature, along with a pronunciation guide. She also includes simple information about fossils and paleontology, explaining how scientists deduce facts from dinosaurs' fossilized remains and footprints. Although bright and colorful, the illustrations are disappointingly bland. Flora is generic and uninspired; the sky is always a flat, cheerful blue. The dinosaurs, too, lack the ferocious grandeur that children find so appealing. Brachiosaurus and Tyrannosaurus rex, described respectively as ``one of the biggest of all dinosaurs'' and ``the most terrible animal that ever roamed the earth'' seem neither grand in stature nor horrifying of tooth and claw. The text also lacks innovation. Gibbons presents little new material on dinosaurs, rehashing dinosaurs' tired old reputations, instead of exploring newer findings. An example: Tyrannosaurus rex is still characterized as ``the terror of the planet,'' despite recent discoveries indicating that the creature may have been, at least in part, a scavenger. Despite its drawbacks, this book should find an audience with beginning readers, very young children, and the meek of heart. Readers who prefer their carnivores horrendous and huge will be better served by Peters' Giants (Knopf, 1986) or Cohen's Dinosaurs (Doubleday, 1987). Cathryn A. Camper, Minneapolis Public Library

Gibbons begins with a clear introduction to dinosaurs and paleontology for young readers. Two-page spreads illustrate and highlight well-known dinosaurs and give an idea of each one's size, habitat, eating habits and behavioras well as a phonetic pronunciation of its name. In closing, Gibbons describes the two leading theories on the decline of the dinosaurs: either the planet grew too hot or meteoritic dust in the atmosphere caused it to cool down. An appendix describes the information gained from fossilized dinosaur footprints. Pleasant and informative, but the number of more elaborate dinosaur books render this one mostly supplemental. Ages 4-8. (October)

Gibbons begins with a clear introduction to dinosaurs and paleontology for young readers. Two-page spreads illustrate and highlight well-known dinosaurs and give an idea of each one's size, habitat, eating habits and behavior as well as a phonetic pronunciation of its name. In closing, Gibbons describes the two leading theories on the decline of the dinosaurs: either the planet grew too hot or meteoric dust in the atmosphere caused it to cool down. An appendix describes the information gained from fossilized dinosaur footprints. Pleasant and informative, but the number of more elaborate dinosaur books render this one mostly supplemental. Ages 4-8.
PreSchool-Grade 2 Like Parish's Dinosaur Time (Harper, 1974), Gibbons introduces one or two dinosaurs per page, providing a few brief bits of information about each creature, along with a pronunciation guide. She also includes simple information about fossils and paleontology, explaining how scientists deduce facts from dinosaurs' fossilized remains and footprints. Although bright and colorful, the illustrations are disappointingly bland. Flora is generic and uninspired; the sky is always a flat, cheerful blue. The dinosaurs, too, lack the ferocious grandeur that children find so appealing. Brontosaurus and Tyrannosaurus Rex, described respectively as one of the biggest of all dinosaurs'' and the most terrible animal that ever roamed the earth'' seem neither grand in stature nor horrifying of tooth and claw. The text also lacks innovation. Gibbons presents little new material on dinosaurs, rehashing dinosaurs' tired old reputations, instead of exploring newer findings. An example: Tyrannosaurus Rex is still characterized as the terror of the planet, '' despite recent discoveries indicating that the creature may have been, at least in part, a scavenger. Despite its drawbacks, this book should find an audience with beginning readers, very young children, and the meek of heart. Readers who prefer their carnivores horrendous and huge will be better served by Peters' Giants (Knopf, 1986) or Cohen's Dinosaurs (Doubleday, 1987). Cathryn A. Camper, Minneapolis Public Library

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