Pika: Life in the Rocks by Tannis Bill

51978142Lynn: Here is a book that is going to take very little work to promote. Just set Pika: Life in the Rocks (Boyds Mills 2010) on display and stand back. The eye-catching cover will guarantee that this book will be checked out immediately.

I am always excited to find excellent nonfiction books for our youngest readers and this one with Jim Jacobson’s fabulous pictures of this adorable little creature will capture the wiggliest reader. The design is clean and uncluttered and text is in a bold font. The sentence structure is simple and is well matched to the pictures making this a book that beginning readers can manage on their own. It is ideal to read to pre-readers too and I think it is big enough to use with a group.

The information is very kid-friendly, too, providing such interesting tidbits as the fact that the pika creates a hay pile as big as a bathtub for his winter stores or that they eat about nine times a day. My grandsons discovered this book on the library New Book shelf and they have loved it. I can see that I’m going to have to add this to our personal library. It’s a good thing that my husband builds bookshelves!

Cindy: I would take Lynn to task for hyperbole in her praise of this book, except that it really is a gem. I really value nonfiction that gets our youngest readers curious about the world around them, and who can resist the picture of this guy poised in defense, mouth wide open emiting his “eeeeep!” warning? The only thing cuter is the end of the book that is signaled by this photo of the pika’s backside.pika The book doesn’t really end there–lots of interesting back matter is included: additional facts about the pika, photos of its predators, a map of their range, and a nice bibliography for young readers who want to know more. My only real complain? I wish Lynn’s husband would build me some bookshelves!

nonfictionmonday1We are happily participating in Nonfiction Monday which today is hosted by Moms Inspire Learning. Check it out!



About the Author:

Cindy Dobrez and Lynn Rutan are Booklist reviewers and middle-school librarians who have chaired both ALA’s Best Books for Young Adults and the Michael L. Printz Award for YA Literature committees. Follow Bookends on Twitter at @BookendsBlog. You can also find Cindy at @cdobrez and Lynn at @482april.

2 Comments on "Pika: Life in the Rocks by Tannis Bill"

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  1. slduke@prodigy.net' Shirley says:

    I’m so glad you loved this book, too. I agree with everything you said in your review. The pictures absolutely showed the text. This is a gem of a book.

  2. tannisbill@shaw.ca' Tannis Bill says:

    Lynn and Cindy, thank you for your lovely review! I’m glad you and the children enjoyed the book!

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