Giant Sea Reptiles of the Dinosaur Age

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9780618504497: Giant Sea Reptiles of the Dinosaur Age
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Throughout the Dinosaur Age, enormous reptiles called ichthyosaurs, plesiosaurs, and mosasaurs swam the seas. Some of these massive creatures weighed more than 20 tons. Others had snake-like necks as long as 23 feet. From Kansas and Canada to Antarctica and New Zealand, fossil bones of these real-life sea monsters have been found.

Acclaimed science author Caroline Arnold and noted natural-history artist Laurie Caple pair up once again to show how fossil evidence worldwide is helping us learn about these amazing reptiles. Featuring eerily beautiful illustrations that bring fossil creatures” to life, this thoroughly researched book gives insight into what Earth was like when prehistoric predators roamed the seas. Author’s note, index.

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About the Author:

Caroline Arnold always loved books, but as a child she never thought of writing as a career. Born in Pittsburgh, she grew up in Minneapolis and studied art at Grinnell College and the University of Iowa. "It was only after my children were born that I became acquainted with children's books and it occurred to me that I could use my training to become a children's book illustrator. I soon realized that I needed a text to go with the pictures, and the more I wrote, the more I realized that I liked writing as much as or more than drawing. I've always been fascinated by the natural world and love to go to the parks and museums. Perhaps that is why so many of my books are about scientific topics." Arnold is now the award-winning author of more than 100 books for children. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, a neuroscientist, and teaches writing at UCLA Extension. For more information visit www.carolinearnoldbooks.com.

From Booklist:

Arnold reteams with Caple for a look at prehistoric creatures that swam in the seas. The focus is on the Mesozoic period and its aquatic reptiles, including ichthyosaurs, plesiosaurs, and mosasaurs. The information about each animal varies. The diet and the birthing of ichthyosaurs are highlighted, while the physical characteristics and predatory habits of the plesiosaurs are center stage. Mosasaurs, which lived later in time than the others, were known as "supreme predators." Throughout, other information is interwoven (e.g., a two-page spread on fossil-finder Mary Anning; another about a scientist putting a dinosaur head on a skeleton's tail instead of its neck). Sometimes these turns seem like an interruption, but they're always interesting. Natural-history artist Caple painstakingly re-creates the creatures Arnold introduces, but it is the undersea paintings, with the reptiles gliding through the water, that are most effective. A list of places to see ancient sea reptiles will whet appetites for more. Cooper, Ilene

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