Sonderbooks Book Reviews by Sondra Eklund

Sonderbooks Stand-out 2004
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*****= An all-time favorite
****  = Outstanding
***    = Above average
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*        = Good, with reservations


****Actual Size

by Steve Jenkins

Reviewed December 20, 2004.
Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, 2004.  32 pages.
Available at Sembach Library (J 591.41 JEN).
Sonderbooks Stand-out 2004, #1, Children's Nonfiction

Actual Size will dazzle any reader, from preschoolers all the way up to the lucky adults who get to share it with their own children.  The concept is simple:  pictures of parts of animals are presented in the actual size they would be in real life.

In the first place, it’s amazing how lifelike Steve Jenkins made the cut-paper illustrations.  I wouldn’t have dreamed that a tiger face made of cut paper could look like it was about to bite.

Besides the high quality of the pictures, readers will be stunned by the information presented.  It’s one thing to be told that a giant squid grows up to 59 feet long.  It’s quite another thing to look a squid in the eye, an eye that is actually 12 inches across.

In this book you can confront the mouth of a great white shark, compare your hand with that of a gorilla or a pygmy mouse lemur, and shudder at the jaws of a saltwater crocodile.

A truly wonderful book.

Reviews of other books by Steve Jenkins:
Never Smile at a Monkey
Dogs and Cats
Just a Second
Hello Baby!
My First Day
Eye to Eye
Creature Features
How to Swallow a Pig
Can an Aardvark Bark?

Copyright © 2005 Sondra Eklund.  All rights reserved.

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