Fourteen Monkeys: A Rain Forest Rhyme

S. & S./Beach Lane. Jul. 2021. 32p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781534460393.
PreS-Gr 2–While monkeys are always appealing to young children, this book digs deeper into the lives of these 14 monkeys using Stewart’s beautiful, descriptive, and age-appropriate vocabulary, and Jenkins’s familiar cut-paper collage illustrations to match. The informational bits provided list the diets, behaviors, and activities that make these monkeys most engaging for young readers. From the outset kids are pulled into Peru’s Manú National Park with bite-sized information about where each monkey lives in the trees and their size relative to humans. Each two-page spread offers a short rhyme about some aspect of the highlighted monkey’s movement, vocalizations, or other habits. There is further detailed information about each monkey in blocks of text to the side of the vivid illustrations. Attention is given to every species listed and whether they dash, scurry, or sprint one is pulled into these enticing pages by both the art and the language. For those species that are active at night the background becomes fully dark, a technique that really pulls the reader into the page and makes the illustrations pop. The book’s final pages include maps and detailed information for each monkey, listing predators, lifespan, “field notes,” and more.
VERDICT A terrific additional or first purchase for young children to enjoy the wonders of life as a monkey in the Manú National Park.

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