September 25, 2013

Do You Know Chameleons?

by Alain M. Bergeron, Michel Quintin and Sampar
Illustrated by Sampar
Fitzhenry & Whiteside
978-1-55455-299-3
64 pp.
Ages 7+
August, 2013

Do You Know Chameleons?  If not, you soon will and that learning will be accompanied surprisingly by uproarious laughter that is rarely heard when young readers check out non-fiction.  Why does non-fiction have to be so dry?  Of course, there are many topics which cannot be lightened with humour because the tragedy and horror embedded therein.  But, what about when learning of chameleons (and toads, spiders, crocodiles, and then rats, leeches, crows and porcupines)?  Let's face it: chameleons are odd little organisms with their quirky nature of camouflage. (See why youngCanLit Camilla Chameleon by Colleen Sydor from Kids Can Press, 2005 was such a hit with kids.  But I digress.) So by taking advantage of the weird and wonderful and then developing a graphic Do You Know? series, Alain M. Bergeron, Michael Quintin and Sampar, courtesy of Fitzhenry & Whiteside, have just given young readers another reason to enjoy non-fiction.

From a graphic of a mother telling her chameleon son to look both ways before crossing the street to demonstrate the organism's independent eye movements (noted in captions) to the boxing match between two chameleons in which the victor becomes more colourful and the loser discolours, Do You Know Chameleons? is filled with bright cartoons depicting key attributes of these animals.  The readers may not always get the puns but they are sure to enjoy the chameleons and other animals as they shop, go to school, eat, fight, surprise and even get traffic tickets! A succinct but useful glossary and index complete the book's well organized format.

Other books in the series include the following:
Do You Know Crocodiles?
by Alain M. Bergeron, Michel Quintin and Sampar
Illustrated by Sampar
Fitzhenry & Whiteside
978-1-55455-304-4
64 pp.
Ages 7+
August, 2013
Do You Know Spiders?
by Alain M. Bergeron, Michel Quintin and Sampar
Illustrated by Sampar
Fitzhenry & Whiteside
978-1-55455-302-0
64 pp.
Ages 7+
August, 2013
Do You Know Toads?
by Alain M. Bergeron, Michel Quintin and Sampar
Illustrated by Sampar
Fitzhenry & Whiteside
978-1-55455-303-7
64 pp.
Ages 7+
August, 2013


... and they are all equally engaging and informative.  I love this series!

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