Pangolina by Jane Goodall, illustrated by Daishu Ma

Pangolina by Jane Goodall, illustrated by Daishu Ma. minedition, 2021. 9781662650406

Format: Hardcover

Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 4

Genre:  Animal fiction

What did you like about the book? A young pangolin narrates a story about her life in China. From learning to use her tongue to procure termites for food and making friends with other animals, to her frightening illegal capture by a hunter and eventual dramatic release, Pangolina imparts a wealth of information about pangolins and their habitat. It was thought provoking to read that Pangolina refers to humans as dangerous. When she is trapped, Civet tells her that the hunter “does not mean to be cruel. He thinks we are just things that have no feelings, that we do not know fear or pain. He just needs to make money so he can feed his children.” Empathy for other living things is an important concept for kids to learn.

The art is striking – it looks to be a combination of digital and other tools, maybe pastels. I love the deep color palette, which evokes the nocturnal world of the pangolin. Back matter includes a wealth of information about pangolins and how to fight their trafficking, including color photographs, and on the work of Jane Goodall.

Anything you didn’t like about it? I found the book a bit text-heavy.

To whom would you recommend this book?  For ages 4-8, especially kids who like to read about animals or to learn about endangered species.

Who should buy this book? Elementary school and public libraries

Where would you shelve it ? Picture books

Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? No

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City and State: Stephanie Tournas, Robbins Library, Arlington, MA

Date of review: June 14, 2021

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