CM January 12, 1996. Vol II, Number 13

image Really Weird Animals.

Tammy Everts and Bobbie Kalman.
Niagra-on-the-Lake, ON: Crabtree Publishing Co., 1995. 32pp. Paper, $7.95 / library bound, $20.95
ISBN 0-86505-627-7 (library), 0-86505-727-3 (paper)

Subject Heading:
Animals-Juvenile literature.

Grades 1 - 5 / Ages 6 - 10.
Review by Harriet Zaidman.


The hagfish has no bones! Its muscular body has only a long piece of tough, bending tissue called gristle, which acts as its spine.
The hagfish is sometimes called a "slime eel" or "slime hag" because of the thick layer of slime, or mucus, that coats its skin. Glands down the sides of its body constantly produce mucus, making the hagfish so slippery that it can crawl inside its prey. When the single nostril of the hagfish becomes clogged with slime, it simply sneezes to clear its nose.

Really Weird Animals is another of the Crabapples series created by Bobbie Kalman. It contains glossy two-page spreads including text and large photographs, and some smaller drawings of unusual-looking animals, including the armadillo, the hagfish, the capybara, the zorilla, and the wombat.

The text describes the animal, some of its eating and living habits, and its special adaptations -- the reasons it's "really weird." The book includes a table of contents, a glossary of words highlighted throughout the text, an index, and a final page with extra information about each animal. The bright cover features a proboscis monkey on the front and a tarsier on the back.

Each page provides eight or nine facts in two or three paragraphs, which testify to the animal's uniqueness. But the location of each animal's habitat is not identified, an important omission that could have been rectified either with a small map or a few words. However, the information about each animal is interesting and clearly written. The excellent visual presentation makes the book appealing to the target age group.

Optional purchase.

Harriet Zaidman is a Winnipeg teacher/librarian.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to

Copyright © 1995 the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.

Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364

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