Sunday book review – A Wild Child’s Guide to Endangered Animals by Millie Marotta

This is a delightful book for children, but will appeal to all ages, and would be particularly suitable for parents (or grandparents) to look at with their younger relatives.

Millie Marotta is responsible for both the illustrations and the text – and both are very good. The format is pretty simple; full page illustration, and text on the facing page, for 43 endangered species from across all continents, grouped roughly by habitat.

There is a preponderance of mammals (17 species) and birds (12 species) with three amphibians, two reptiles and six fish, leaving space for two insects and a crustacean which is an unsurprising but inaccurate spread of endangered animal species (and no plants, of course). But the selection will partly have been made on the basis of the attractiveness of the species (I can imagine the author/illustrator thinking ‘I want to draw that!’ several times as she went through potential species for inclusion), and the selection of species covers all continents, all major habitats and a good variety of reasons why the species are threatened.

The text is not the least bit preachy and yet gets quite a lot of useful and educative messages across in an entirely palatable way. And I would challenge anyone to read the book and fail to learn some interesting fact. Which is the world’s largest freshwater invertebrate? Virgin births in Komodo Dragons?

A book for nature-lovers of all ages. The illustrations are very attractive.

A Wild Child’s Guide to Endangered Animals by Millie Marota is published by Particular Books.

Remarkable Birds by Mark Avery is published by Thames and Hudson – for reviews see here.

Inglorious: conflict in the uplands by Mark Avery is published by Bloomsbury – for reviews see here.

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