Thursday, April 28, 2011

New Releases from Sylvan Dell

We have been slow to post reviews of two great new books we read a couple of weeks ago.  The Bibliophile was super excited when they arrived, and savored them for a long time. 

Habitat SpyHabitat Spy was an instant hit, as I knew it would be.  Beautifully illustrated scenes introduce the reader to a wide array of wildlife, and rhyming text highlights a few specimens for the reader to locate.
Let's spy in the desert . . .
saguaros prick,
scorpions sneak,
cactus wrens poke,
foxes peek.
An educational section in the back discusses habitats, food chains and webs, and classification.  I wish it also included a picture glossary; some of the creatures (like midges) were tricky enough for us to require iphone googling.  I do love teaching the Bibliophile how to find answers to questions, though, and it seemed to only add to his fun.  Highly recommended, especially for I spy fans and animal/nature lovers.

Big Cat, Little KittyWith an inventive style, Big Cat, Little Kitty compares the lives of wild cats and their more domesticated counterparts.  It contains just enough repetition to create a thread between the wild and tame animals, and to engage repetition-loving young readers without driving parents nutty.
"One Wednesday evening in the desert, a big cat stands on a rock and sniffs the air.  His eyes blaze like the sun.  'Who are you?' asks a springbok.  'And whose desert is this?'  The big cat's voice thunders in the dry wind.  'I am Kalahari Lion, and this is MY desert.'  Springbok scampers away. / That same evening in a garden, a little kitty sharpens his claws on a birch tree and sniffs the lilacs.  His eyes are shiny like gold coins.  'Who are you?,' asks a butterfly.  'And whose garden is this?'  The little kitty puffs himself up.  'I am Leonardo, and this is MY garden.'  Butterfly flitters away."
We enjoyed the entire book once through.  The attention span required was probably pushing it for our 3 year old, but he still liked it.  Particularly recommended, obviously, for cat lovers.  As with all Sylvan Dell books, the book is beautifully illustrated and contains an educational section in the back (including a "Cats of the World" map matching activity right up the Bibliophile's alley).

Disclosure: We were provided with publisher copies of these books at no cost in order to write this review.  If you click on any links in the post and purchase anything, we may earn a small commission through our affiliate relationship with


Raising a Happy Child said...

Both books look really awesome! I am sure Anna will enjoy them - thanks for the reviews.

gae polisner said...

Big Cat looks like a terrific learning book. Will recommend it.