Editorial Review

Series Made Simple

Fascinating facts and appealing photographs introduce animals with extraordinary abilities. Most of the text focuses on a few particular aspects of the featured animal, such as the hummingbird’s ability to fly, go into torpor, and find nectar. Lucidly written paragraphs identify different traits and explain how they help the creature. A chapter on chameleon colors includes information about reflective cells, body temperature, and visual communication. Abilities that apply to a specific species, such as weaver ants’ “superglue,” are noted. Photographs are large and clear, and most depict the animal showing off the relevant characteristic, from a hummingbird hanging upside down in torpor to honeypot ants storing nectar. Simple sentence structure keeps the text accessible for younger readers, and a captioned, full-body diagram reinforces the content. VERDICT The combination of text, visuals, and subject matter offers high appeal for middle elementary grade readers.

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