HomeBooks by AgeAges 4-8New Books about Animals

New Books about Animals

By Nicki Richesin, The Children’s Book Review
Published: November 8, 2011

Whether you prefer animals as loveable yet zany characters who talk or as a species that live in the natural world, these entertaining books teach children about both fantasy and science. You’ll have a beastly good time reading with these funny, furry creatures that might inspire a life-long interest in nature. Let the wild rumpus commence.

School for Bandits

by Hannah Shaw

School for Bandits by Hannah Shaw is a fun romp with a little raccoon who wants to be a fine scholar yet enrolls in a school plagued by ruffians where “no niceness is allowed.” Check out the trailer for a sneak peek at the high jinx that ensues. (Ages 5-8)

A Cat Like That

by Wendy Wahman

A Cat Like That by Wendy Wahman details all the many benefits of having a furry feline friend. Pay close attention to the traits a cat looks for in a devoted companion in this lovely trailer. (Ages 4-7)

The Incredible Life of Balto

By Meghan McCarthy

The Incredible Life of Balto by Meghan McCarthy is the true story of the heroic dog who braved the freezing journey from Nenana to Nome to deliver a serum for the diphtheria epidemic of 1925. See a video about his great Alaskan adventure and for everything you ever wanted to know about Balto, check out McCarthy’s tribute page to the famous pooch. (Ages 5-8)

A Zeal of Zebras: An Alphabet of Collective Nouns

By WOOP Studios

WOOP Studios has famously brought us all manner of Harry Potter graphic design, but they have something new in store: A Zeal of Zebras: An Alphabet of Collective Nouns. A winning combination of cool design and fun animal facts will make you shout a wild woop for this A-Z safari! (Ages 6-9)

The Pet Shop Revolution

By Ana Juan

Ana Juan’s Mina boldly leads The Pet Shop Revolution with a charge to aid the miserable animals caged by their cruel owner. Her illustrations are curiously inventive, just as in her earlier works Frida and The Night Eater. This picture book makes you feels as if you’ve entered another dimension, one where life imitates art. (Ages 5-8)

Around the World on Eighty Legs

By Amy Gibson; illustrated by Daniel Salmieri

The good-natured animals in Around the World on Eighty Legs (illustrated with great panache by Daniel Salmieri) shake their tail feathers with glee at Amy Gibson’s funny verses. With clever poems and lively pictures, this one comes highly recommended. (Ages 4-8)

The Pig Scramble

By Jessica Kinney; illustrated by Sarah S. Brannen

Sweetly inspired by her husband’s experience growing up on a dairy farm in Maine, Jessica Kinney wrote The Pig Scramble for him. Uncle Leon offers encouragement to his nephew Clarence, the youngest of three who often feels left behind by his older and more capable brothers. Sarah S. Brannen’s illustrations perfectly capture life on a New England farm. (Ages 5-8)

Curious Critters

By David FitzSimmons

David FitzSimmons’s truly impressive photographs of Curious Critters seem so real it’s as if you’re holding the animals in your hands. The white background and magnified dimensions will show children in stunning detail what these animals really look like- up close and personal. (Ages 4-8)

Who Has These Feet?

By Laura Hulbert; illustrated by Erik Brooks

Who Has These Feet? by Laura Hulbert and illustrated by Erik Brooks will fascinate little ones just learning about polar bears, tree frogs, parrots, geckos, and kangaroos. A wonderfully interactive selection especially recommended for squirmy, reluctant readers. (Ages 3-7)

Nicki Richesin is the editor of four anthologies,What I Would Tell Her: 28 Devoted Dads on Bringing Up, Holding On To, and Letting Go of Their Daughters; Because I Love Her: 34 Women Writers Reflect on the Mother-Daughter Bond; Crush: 26 Real-Life Tales of First Love; and The May Queen: Women on Life, Work, and Pulling it all Together in your Thirties. Her anthologies have been excerpted and praised in The New York Times, the San Francisco ChronicleThe Boston GlobeRedbookParenting, CosmopolitanBust,  Daily Candy, and Babble.

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Nicki Richesin is a freelance writer and editor based in San Francisco. She writes personal essays and pieces on lifestyle, parenting, and pop culture for Sunset, DuJour, 7×7, Daily Candy, and The Huffington Post. She is also the author and editor of The May Queen, Because I Love Her, What I Would Tell Her, and Crush. You can find her online at <a href="http://www.nickirichesin.com">http://www.nickirichesin.com</a>

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