Curious Critters Volume 2 Children's Book Review and Giveaway



Award-winning author and photographer David FitzSimmons has a unique approach to taking pictures of animals and he loves sharing it with kids. Instead of seeking rare animals in exotic locations, David photographs common animals—many found in your own backyard—against plain, white backgrounds, producing detailed close-up images that are simply striking.  These images are the visual foundation of his “Curious Critters” children’s picture books. Volume one won five national book awards.


There are twenty different animals in “Curious Critters Volume Two”.  Each animal gets to tell it's store, for example, the proud papa Northern cardinal, who explains how he and his “crested cutie” built their nest:

As I flew in with twigs, then leaves, then grapevine bark, and, finally, grass and pine needles, my singing sweetie put our cup-shaped nest together.

Then, after laying three eggs, my orange-beaked beauty began sitting on our eggs while I brought her seeds to eat. A dozen days later, our hatchlings pecked their way out. They looked so cute!

The second volume of Curious Critters also includes the airline pilot monarch butterfly:


Air traffic control, this is Monarch Flight 1 preparing for takeoff, flying from Milkweed, Minnesota, to Oyamel Fir Forest, Mexico. The estimated flight time for our two-thousand mile journey is just over two months.

Then there’s the buccaneer bluegill, who’s the pirate of the pond:


Ahoy! Call me Cap’n Bluegill. I ply these waters looking for good eatin’. Me tall, flat body and me ruthless rigging—you know, me fearsome fins—allow me to sail smartly and steer sharply. If a snail, a worm, or a dragonfly larva dares to dally in me waters, I chase ’em down, then suck ’em in. Gulp!    

Other characters include the muscle-bound green frog with an East-coast accent, the American Kestrel with his high dive circus act, the sidewinder magician, and the leucistic gray squirrel, who grows weary of people thinking that her white color means she’s an albino.

Of all the characters, however, children may delight most in the four Eastern cottontails.

As cute as the bunnies are, their childlike conversation about coprophagy—yes, rabbits eat their own poop!—is sure to have children and parents groaning with delight.

You mean we eat our own . . . feces?!
Feces? What are feces?
You know . . . poop.
Who said that?
I did. That’s what I heard.
Yep. By eating grasses twice, we get more nutrients the second time through. All rabbits do it. What’s wrong with that?
Eeew!
That’s disgusting!

“Curious Critters Volume Two” is filled with other fascinating fauna, including a beautiful butterfly, a Spanish-speaking armadillo, a mathematical moth, a bellowing alligator, a back flipping beetle, and other amazing animals.

The picture book also features additional natural history information for each Critter and a two-page spread of life-size silhouettes, where readers are asked to identify the animals, find one whose shape has changed, test geometry skills in looking for reversed silhouettes, and figure out what the various colors represent. The book also includes a glossary. 

My kids love reading and they love nature.  We also liked the fact that these animals are what we call "normal," ones we might actually get to see in an everyday situation.  As we read through Curious Critters:  Volume 2, we would have to stop and talk about the ones that my kids have seen.  Too mention a few, they fish for bluegill all of the time at our uncle's pond.  They have also held an American alligator, me too!!  Our most favorite in the whole books was the great-horned owl.  We went to an animal sanctuary and saw some rescued owls.  We had a great time with these books!

Curious Critters Volume 2 is available on Amazon for $14.36.

The author, David FitzSimmons, and Wild Iris Publishing would like to give a copy of Curious Critters to one of my readers.

Want to win?  
Here's how:
Tell me what your favorite animal at the zoo is.
Extra entries for: 
Like me on facebook and leave a comment saying that you do.
 Follow me on twitter and leave me a comment saying that you do.  
Like Curious Critters on facebook and leave a comment saying that you do.  
Please leave separate comments, and direct all other comments or questions to my email.   Contest will end on Sunday February 16th.

Thank you to Wild Iris publishing for my samples used in this review and for my winner's prize.  My opinions are my own and honest.

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38 comments:

Colleen Maurina said...

My favorite animal at the zoo is the giraffe!

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Colleen Maurina said...

I like you on Facebook. (Colleen Maurina)

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Colleen Maurina said...

I like Curious Critters on Facebook. (Colleen Maurina)

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phxbne said...

love the zebras

phxbne said...

twitter follower phxbne

Halation said...

Love the penguins!

Halation said...

I follow you on facebook! (Rachel Harper)

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Halation said...

I follow you on twitter. @RachelH76

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jlee said...

We love seeing zebras and lions.

jlee said...

Liked me on facebook (Julie Kim)

jlee said...


Following you on twitter (juliekim727)

jlee said...


Liked Curious Critters on facebook (Julie Kim)

cooponmommy said...

I love the monkeys! especially the little ones... How can you not?!?

cooponmommy said...

I like you on facebook :)

cooponmommy said...

I like curious critters on facebook :)

cooponmommy said...

I follow you on twitter :)

pmj said...

I'm a fan of the elephants.

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pmj said...

Fb fan

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pmj said...

Twitter follower
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Charlene Canfield said...

That is hard to choose. I like the lions. they are so laid back.
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Charlene Canfield said...

I like you on facebook.
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Charlene Canfield said...

I follow you on twitter @cjcmommy.
cjcmommy@gmail.com

Charlene Canfield said...

I like Curious Critters on facebook. cjcmommy@gmail.com

Diana said...

I love the polar bears
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Diana said...

I like you on fb
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Diana said...

I follow you on twitter
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Taryn Tener said...

I love the giraffe! They are so peaceful and graceful!

Taryn Tener said...

I follow you on Twitter@taryn221

corey1971 said...

I love all kinds of primates (CoreyOlomon at gimail dot com)

corey1971 said...

I liked you on Facebook (CoreyOlomon at gimail dot com)

PEMom said...

My favorite animal at the zoo is the polar bear.

PEMom said...

I like you on facebook. (K. Lundine)

PEMom said...

twitter follower @klundine

PEMom said...

I like Curious Critters on facebook. (K. Lundine)

lilyk said...

I love pandas!

lilyk said...

I follow you on Facebook under the username likwan.

lilyk said...

I follow you on Twitter under the username likwan.

lilyk said...

I follow Curious Critters on Facebook under the username likwan.