A non-fiction picture book about chameleons written from a very personal viewpoint, mixing fact with feelings, encouraging children to think, feel and imagine as they learn.
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Martin Jenkins first saw chameleons in Madagascar and, he says, "fell in love with them at first sight. I picked one up, ever so gently, and it promptly bit me on the thumb. I still think they are wonderful, but tend to leave them alone whenever I bump into them."
Sue Shields had to develop a new way of painting for Chameleons Are Cool, "to try to describe not only the chameleons‘ astonishing colors, but also the hint of the colors they can change into."
Gr 1-3--With infectious enthusiasm, a boy explains his fascination with chameleons by describing their unique physical and behavioral characteristics. Vivid ink-and-watercolor paintings realistically depict a variety of the strange-looking lizards; each double-page spread shows one or more kinds. Miscellaneous facts are also included in small-print sentences that curve under or over the illustrations. The tone of the first-person narration doesn't get in the way of the information presented, with the minor exception of a section describing chameleons as "grumpy." While this title does not attempt to be a comprehensive introduction, some basic material is missing. Specifically, the text does not mention the lizard's tail, which in most species is prehensile and aids in gripping branches. Additionally, most of the species depicted are not identified. Despite these minor flaws, this book will serve as a companion volume to the more thorough introductions aimed at slightly older readers, such as James Martin's Chameleons (Crown, 1991) or Claudia Schnieper's Chameleons (Carolrhoda, 1989).
Karey Wehner, San Francisco Public Library
Copyright 1998 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Walker Books Ltd, 1999. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P11074456333X