Reviews provided by Syndetics
School Library Journal Review
Gr 3-5-Whether a creature looks like an unusual tadpole with feathery headgear (the axolotl) or an adorable miniature penguin (the 12-inch fairy penguin), readers will enjoy learning about these animals from around the world. This title has a lot of visual appeal for curious students-large photographs and cartoon graphics fill the pages. Readers might be learning about some animals like the furry little quokka from Western Australia for the first time. The author includes a page near the end called "The Science of Cute," which provides more information on how this all plays out in nature. ("Believe it or not, cuteness could be a survival strategy.") While the topic might seem lighthearted, there is enough scientific information woven into the text. Facts given about each animal include the species' name, size, diet, habitat, and predators and other threats. There is also a glossary at the back with terms like diurnal. VERDICT A home run for public and school libraries. The subject matter, the format, and visual components make this a title that is likely to see a lot of circulation.-Robin Sofge, Prince William Public Library System, VA © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Whether in meme form or in funny videos, the internet loves some animals, and Keating (Pink Is for Blobfish , 2016, and What Makes a Monster? , 2017) has cracked the code of spotlighting cute creatures. While it would have been easy for zoologist-turned-author Keating to choose well-known animals, she smartly goes for 17 rare offerings, including a hummingbird bobtail squid, a rosy maple moth, a fairy penguin, a dwarf flying squirrel, and the titular axolotl. Each two-page spread features, on one page, a full-color, close-up photograph of the animal, while the facing page showcases DeGrand's quirky cartoon illustrations. The text itself is done in conversational paragraphs, the vocabulary words in bold, and a sidebar giving typical nonfiction need-to-knows, such as size, diet, habitat, and where it falls in the food web, as well as a weird fact about each organism. End-page material includes a discussion on what, exactly, makes something cute, and a glossary of "useful words." Fun, endlessly interesting, and, yes, cute, this is a slam dunk for any collection.--Erin Linsenmeyer Copyright 2018 Booklist
Horn Book Review
This offbeat survey explores several "cute" creatures--from fairy penguins to pom-pom crabs to pangolins--whose endearing features actually help ensure their survival. A spread about each animal features a concise introduction to that creature, a close-up photograph and cartoon illustration, and a sidebar of additional facts. Discussion of "The Science of Cute" and reading comprehension questions conclude this intriguing examination. Glos. (c) Copyright 2019. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Kirkus Book Review
A dynamic introduction to 17 of the world's most adorable creatures. Keating and DeGrand's follow-up to Pink Is for Blobfish (2015) and What Makes a Monster? (2017) highlights still more unusual animals. Each double-page spread is dedicated to one particular animal and has four consistent features. On the verso is a large, stock photograph underneath the phrase "Cute as an [ANIMAL]." On the recto is a paragraph with a brief overview of what makes the animal notable; a sidebar with a rundown of the animal's Latin name, size, diet, habitat, and predators and threats; and a brightly colored pull-out paragraph highlighting a particularly intriguing fact and paired with a cartoonlike illustration from DeGrand. Animals included range from the mandatory (pygmy hippopotamus, fennec fox) to the surprising (pom-pom crab, blue dragon sea slug). Close-up photographs provide excellent detail but don't provide a realistic scale, especially for the smaller animals, and thus the animals that are cute in part due to their size lose some of their cuteness. A concluding spread explores "the science of cute," and potentially unfamiliar vocabulary words are highlighted throughout in bold, leading to a glossary in the back. Keating's chipper voice always shines through ("With its perma-smile and fuzzy face, the QUOKKA is fast becoming one of the world's best-known cutie-pies").A highly engaging overview that will have readers eager to learn more. (Informational picture book. 7-11) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.