Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page 60.
- Review Date: 2009-01-19
- Reviewer: Staff
Florian's free-flowing, witty collection of poems and collages about dinosaurs is a giganotosaurus delight—perhaps his best work ever. The poems marry facts with a poet's eye for detail: the Brachiosaurus was “longer than a tennis court” and the Ankylosaurus says, “We like spikes and we like scutes/ (Bony plates we wear as suits).” Small experts will appreciate the “Glossarysaurus” at the end, but the heart of the book is in its humor, the spontaneity of both illustrations and poems, and Florian's slightly askew view of the Mesozoic creatures. A Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton spews cutout images of things a T. rex might actually have eaten, along with a tumble of other things (newspaper clippings, a boot, a building), while the text ends with a great pun (“I find it terrific/ That it's T-rex-tinct”). The tiny (20-inch) Micropachycephalosaurus stares up at a huge display of his enormous name spelled out phonetically, in illuminated caps and as a rhombus. Art and text will encourage aspiring paleontologists and poets to parse these pages again and again. Ages 6–up. (Mar.)
A turn for the verse
You'd be hard-pressed to find a kid who isn't instantly mega-charmed by Dinothesaurus: Prehistoric Poems and Paintings, the triumphant new book by Douglas Florian, author of mammalabilia and insectlopedia. Combine facts about dinosaurs with beguiling rhythmic verse and you have an instant classic. In this case, Florian's smart art shares the spotlight with his dino-rhymes. If T. rexes are fan favorites so, too, will be their ode, which ends this way: "Its jaws were horrific. / Its profile distinct. / I find it terrific / That it's T-rex-tinct."