animals, mystery, tween

Monkey Magic 3: The Ghostly Thieves of New York


Author: Grant S. Clark
Genre: Middle grade / adventure / animals
ISBN: 979-8701643480
Pages: 206
Price: $9.99

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Romy Alexander has just arrived in New York after her adventures in China. She plans to tour the hot spots the guide has chosen for them and catch up on some sleep. But she doesn’t anticipate finding out that there are ghost thieves visiting the museums at night, stealing artifacts from endangered species in order to bring attention to their plight.

Nocturnal monkey visitors to her hotel room explain what’s going on, and look for her assistance. She’ll need to use her monkey magic once again to communicate with them and help them out. But not everything is as it seems, and soon Romy finds herself in trouble. It’s a good thing she isn’t the only one who has the ability to use monkey magic!

Monkey Magic 3: The Ghostly Thieves of New York is a fun mystery-adventure with lots of action. Romy barely has time to settle in before being whisked away on her latest mission. Kids will enjoy her daring and concern for the monkeys she meets. I highly recommend this newest addition to the Monkey Magic series.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

animals, children

P Is For Puffin


Author: Timothy Young
Publisher: Schiffer Kids
Genre: Children / Board book
ISBN: 978-0-7643-6247-7
Pages: 26
Price: $8.99

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P Is For Puffin is a unique alphabet board book. Rather than using more traditional animals associated with each letter of the alphabet, the author has chosen to show us some unusual and unique animals instead. Kids will be introduced to echidnas, kinkajous, and vaquitas, as well as many others. Each animal is pictured along with a short description about it, along with a pronunciation guide.

There is so much to learn from P Is For Puffin and children will love reading about these animals. I highly recommend it.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

animals, children, nature

Whose House Is That?


Author & Illustrator: Stan Tekiela
Publisher: Adventure Publications
Genre: Children, Animals, Nature
ISBN: 978-1-64755-074-5
Pages: 48
Price: $14.95

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Animals create unique and interesting places to live, and Stan Tekiela invites us into their homes for a virtual photographic visit.

Each home is pictured on the first spread, with an opportunity for children to guess who built it. The following spread shows the animal and provides facts about it. Animals featured are the: bald eagle, American robin, bald-faced hornet, Monarch butterfly, American beaver, black bear, garden spider, prairie dog, sunfish, cottontail rabbit, and common ant. The final page invites kids to look for animal homes near them.

Whose House Is That? is a fun exploration of animals and their living quarters. I highly recommend it.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

animals, children, fitness

Yoga Animals


Author: Paige Towler
Publisher: National Geographic Kids
Genre: Children / Animals / Yoga
ISBN: 978-1-4263-3752-9
Pages: 32
Price: $16.99

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Animals stretch, and so should we. In Yoga Animals, kids see animals demonstrating their stretches, and they’re encouraged to mimic their movements.

Fun photos of the animals in their poses show how they stretch their bodies. These poses are: Giraffe (Upward Salute), Flamingo (Tree Pose), Gorilla (Standing Forward Fold), Cat, Puppy (Downward Dog), Lion, Bunny (Rabbit), Cobra, and Crocodile. Additional details regarding each pose are provided in the appendix.

Kids will love learning about yoga from the animals in Yoga Animals.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

animals, children, history

Maisie Mammoth’s Memoirs


Author & Illustrator: Rob Hodgson
Contributor: Prof. Michael J. Benton
Publisher: Thames & Hudson
Genre: Children / History / Animals
ISBN: 978-0-500-65206-0
Pages: 48
Price: $19.95

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Maisie Mammoth lived during the Ice Age, and she considers herself a popular socialite. In Maisie Mammoth’s Memoirs, she introduces us to some of the animals she knew in her day.

After a brief description of the Ice Age, Maisie introduces us to her personal assistant, Buttercup, who unfortunately fell in a bog and remained preserved in ice. Then she provides a tour around the world, sharing fun facts about each of her friends. As she introduces them by name, she explains a little about their diet, habits, body characteristics, and the dangers they faced.

When a woolly mammoth narrates, Ice Age information goes from hum-drum to fascinating. I highly recommend Maisie Mammoth’s Memoirs for anyone interested in Ice Age animals (and Neanderthals).

Reviewer: Alice Berger

animals, children

If I Had a Sleepy Sloth


Author & Illustrator: Alex Barrow and Gabby Dawnay
Publisher: Thames & Hudson
Genre: Children / Animals
ISBN: 978-0-500-65194-0
Pages: 32
Price: 14.95

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What would be the perfect pet for this little girl? A sleepy sloth, who will help her slow down and relax. Sloths are the perfect companions for hammocks, meditation, and simply hanging around.

If I Had a Sleepy Sloth is a cute rhyming book sharing all the benefits to having a sloth as pet. Kids will love this adorable, lovable creature, and probably ask Mom and Dad for a sloth of their own. (Parents, consider yourselves fore-warned!) I highly recommend it.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

animals, children, nature

Bats


Author & Illustrator: Gail Gibbons
Publisher: Holiday House
Genre: Nature / Children
ISBN: 978-0-8234-4354-3
Pages: 32
Price: $18.99

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Bats are amazing creatures, but many people are afraid of them. They are harmless animals that care for their young, help control the insect population, and pollinate plants. And right now they are in danger.

Since people don’t understand much about these mammals, they destroy their habitats. Pollution and pesticides also threaten bats. And now, they face a terrible disease called white-nose syndrome that has killed many bats.

Bats may be associated with Count Dracula but they’re not scary at all. In fact, they will probably never come near you. Bats provides a wealth of information so kids can learn all about these nocturnal animals and develop a healthy respect for them. I highly recommend it.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

animals, children, dogs

Why Do Dogs Sniff Butts?


Author: Dr. Nick Crumpton
Illustrator: Lily Snowden-Fine
Publisher: Thames & Hudson
Genre: Children / Dogs
ISBN: 978-0-500-65223-7
Pages: 48
Price: $16.95

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Have you ever wondered why dogs sniff butts? Or what their wagging tails mean? Do you know about the various jobs dogs were bred to perform? Or why dogs chase cats? If you’re fascinated with man’s best friend and just want to know more about them, Why Do Dogs Sniff Butts? is the perfect book for you.

Filled with lots of interesting facts about dogs, this illustrated book is a fun read for kids or any dog lover. I highly recommend it.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

animals, children, nature

Whose Track is That?


Author: Stan Tekiela
Publisher: Adventure Publications
Genre: Children / Nature / Animals
ISBN: 978-1-59193-958-0
Pages: 52
Price: $14.95

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If you were hiking in the woods and came across an animal track, would you be able to identify it? Whose Track is That? is a fun way to learn which animals might make the tracks you find.

This book features animals tracks for 11 different animals. First, we see a close-up photo of what it looks like, along with a description and a clue as to what it might be. Then when we turn the page, the animal is identified, along with photos and interesting information about it. The appendix shows all animal tracks with some additional pointers to help in identification.

Stan Tekiela has created another fun activity book for kids with his beautiful photography and knowledge of nature. I highly recommend Whose Track is That?

Reviewer: Alice Berger

animals, humor, tween

Squirrel in the Museum


Author: Vivian Vande Velde
Illustrator: Steve Björkman
Publisher: Holiday House
Genre: Middle grade
ISBN: 978-0-8234-4167-9
Pages: 112
Price: $15.99

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Twitch, the squirrel, has heard stories about wolves who eat squirrels. Twitch doesn’t want to be eaten, but he has no idea what a wolf is. So when the students are going to the museum, he decides to tag along and see if he can learn about wolves.

No one expects to see a squirrel in a museum, so the staff are understandably upset, especially when the squirrel becomes a disruption to the exhibits and proves difficult to catch. But when it appears that Twitch might meet a fate worse than wolves, an unexpected hero comes to his defense.

Squirrel in the Museum is a madcap adventure to the museum through the eyes of a squirrel. Fast-paced, zany action will delight young readers who will enjoy reading about Twitch’s escapades.

Reviewer: Alice Berger