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Living Color    by Steve Jenkins order for
Living Color
by Steve Jenkins
Order:  USA  Can
Houghton Mifflin, 2007 (2007)

Read an Excerpt

* *   Reviewed by Hilary Daninhirsch

This unique picture book, which is sectioned by color, introduces children to a variety of exuberantly-hued animals. Some of the animals are widely known while others are less common. Small paragraphs are devoted to each animal and explain the significance of that animals' coloring; nature gave many of these creatures their specific colors for a variety of reasons, such as camouflage against enemies, mating rituals, or for sending other messages.

For example, we learn that the yellow mongoose's fur blends in with its surroundings, providing it protection from predators in the dry plains of Africa. And an African chameleon changes color to express its feelings rather than to blend in with its environment.

Older children will likely appreciate not only the vivacious and resplendent illustrations (which remind me of Eric Carle's style) but will enjoy a scientific foray into an elusive aspect of nature. The author includes more general information about animal color, and a highly detailed glossary provides even more facts about all of the animals featured in the book. Living Color would be a good choice for a school library.

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