The Kids’ Cat­a­log of Ani­mals and the Earth

Chaya M. Burstein
  • Review
By – July 16, 2012
Like the oth­er books in JPS’s Kids’ Cat­a­log series, this is a use­ful and fact-filled com­pendi­um, writ­ten in the author’s spright­ly style and illus­trat­ed, in part, with her child-friend­ly car­toon sto­ries. In the copy that was reviewed, all of the illus­tra­tions and pho­tographs are in black and white, mak­ing for a some­what monot­o­nous for­mat. The con­tent is com­pre­hen­sive, includ­ing fac­tu­al infor­ma­tion, his­to­ry, lore, leg­end, short sto­ries, exper­i­ments, crafts and activ­i­ties, a mini-ency­clo­pe­dia, and an index. Although the focus is on Israel and Judaism with a broad sweep that ranges from bib­li­cal begin­nings to ecol­o­gy and zool­o­gy, the con­tri­bu­tions of non-Jew­ish eco-heroes” like Rachel Car­son and Jane Goodall are also cov­ered. Kids who con­sult the cat­a­log at Tu B’Shevat or any oth­er time of the year will find them­selves not only informed but moti­vat­ed to take action on behalf of the earth and its liv­ing things. This impor­tant addi­tion to library col­lec­tions of all kinds is for ages 9 – 14.
Lin­da R. Sil­ver is a spe­cial­ist in Jew­ish children’s lit­er­a­ture. She is edi­tor of the Asso­ci­a­tion of Jew­ish Libraries’ Jew­ish Val­ues­find­er, www​.ajl​jew​ish​val​ues​.org, and author of Best Jew­ish Books for Chil­dren and Teens: A JPS Guide (The Jew­ish Pub­li­ca­tion Soci­ety, 2010) and The Jew­ish Val­ues Find­er: A Guide to Val­ues in Jew­ish Children’s Lit­er­a­ture (Neal-Schu­man, 2008).

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