Oceans and Seas – Miranda Baker, illustrations by Gareth Lucas/ Dinosaurs – Miranda Baker, illustrations by Amanda Shufflebotham

 Oceans and Seas (Ultimate Earth) – Miranda Baker, illustrations by Gareth Lucas, 360 Degrees, an imprint of Tiger Tales, 9781944530334, 2021 


Dinosaurs (Ultimate Earth) – Miranda Baker, illustrations by Amanda Shufflebotham, 360 Degrees, an imprint of Tiger Tales, 9781944530327, 2021


Format: Board Book

Rating:  1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 5

 What did you like about the book? Both of these books are very elaborate and detailed board books about sea creatures and dinosaurs. Oceans and Seas include such creatures as the saltwater crocodile, flower urchin, blue whale, giant manta ray, firefly squid, and a narwhal. This book is divided into sections entitled “Predators of the Sea”, “Giants of the Deep”, “Disguise and Display”, “Speedy Swimmers”, “Weird and Wonderful”, and “Oceans in Danger”. The last section provides some wonderful suggestions that people can do to help protect the oceans and the creatures that call the oceans their homes. Dinosaurs also has some interesting sections including “Deadly Dinosaurs”, “Biggest Beasts”, “Disguise and Display”, “Fast and Furious”, “Weird and Wonderful”, and “Dead or Alive”. The last section provides some interesting facts about the other animals that either died or survived during the time when the asteroid hit. Some animals actually did survive, such as the crocodile and small mammals, by escaping into water or burrowing into the ground. This book features such dinosaurs as velociraptors, diplodocus, sinosauropteryx, brachiosaurus, and of course, the T. Rex. 

Both books feature bright illustrations and a variety of flaps and pull out pages. Some flaps are even double flapped to illustrate a specific feature of an animal. For example, a flap of a seal is over a larger flap of a shark. A child can lift the seal flap to show how a seal jumps out of the water to escape a shark, however, when the child lifts the shark flap, they can then see how the shark can also jump out of the water. The flaps and pull outs are used to convey some key features about these creatures.

Anything you did not like about the book. Nothing.

To whom would you recommend this book? Even though these are board books, I would not necessarily recommend them to very young children. Some of the flaps and page fold outs are not as sturdy as other board books for very young children. There are many details so these books would be better suited for children between the ages of four and eight years old.

Who should buy this book? Public and elementary school libraries, a science classroom, anyone who works with children between the ages of four and eight years old.

Where would you shelve it? Nonfiction or Board Book–hard to say because of its unique design.

 Should we (librarians) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? Yes, the flap features really add to the comprehension of the material.

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Kristin Guay, former youth services librarian.

Date of review: March 7, 2021

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