Bookshelf: May/June 2013
by Darlyne A. Murawski
National Geographic Society, 2000
You’ll see bugs in a whole new way when you take a look at this impressive book. Filled with huge, stunning closeup photos, the book focuses on the eyes, mouths, and other facial features of various bugs, including a dragonfly, a daddy-longlegs, a deer fly, and more. Each amazing photo invites investigation and is paired with short, lively text that explains some of the details shown. Among our favorites are the snout moth, which has feelers in the middle of its face that it uses like windshield wipers to clean its eyes, and the bumblebee, shown with both its antennae and its proboscis plunged into a pollen-rich flower head.
The Beetle Book
by Steve Jenkins
Houghton Mifflin Books for Children, 2012
“Line up every kind of plant and animal on Earth ... and one of every four will be a beetle.” With so many different kinds of beetles, it should come as no surprise just how fascinating they can be. Acclaimed author-illustrator Jenkins introduces readers to dozens of these intriguing insects: beetles that stink, beetles that bite, beetles that squeak, beetles that glow, and many, many more. A wealth of intriguing information is presented in the captions throughout the book, but the vivid, larger-than-life-size, cut-paper illustrations of the beetles are mesmerizing all by themselves.
Velma Gratch and the Way Cool Butterfly
by Alan Madison
illustrated by Kevin Hawkes
Schwartz & Wade Books, 2007
Little Velma Gratch feels overshadowed by her two older sisters and longs to be noticed. When she enters first grade, everyone has marvelous memories of her sisters but can hardly remember poor Velma’s name. That all changes when Velma’s class tours a butterfly conservatory and a magnificent monarch perches on Velma’s finger and refuses to leave. The familiar story of an overlooked younger sibling finding her niche and blossoming is told with charm and humor, but what sets this book apart are the bright, witty illustrations and the seamless weaving of butterfly facts into the plot. Don’t miss the front and back endpapers, which show an Orange-tipped Gratch and Small Gratchis among the colorful caterpillars and butterflies.