Monday, May 1, 2017

Nonfiction Monday

Salamander Dance by David FitzSimmons is a feast for the eyes and a delightful read that introduces young readers to the exotic woodland world of the spotted salamander.

The story traces the life cycle of these shy amphibians as they find their way to cool vernal pools in the spring where their dance takes place in the dark of the night. A few days later, the females lay eggs then return to their forest homes. Baby salamanders, known as larvae, emerge a month later and live their underwater life sustained by plankton and insects. As summer warms and dries the pools, the salamander’s metamorphosis causes them to grow legs, and their gills disappear as their lungs develop. Soon the young salamanders make their way into the forest and seek refuge where they will hibernate throughout the winter.

 Lyrical descriptions, “Through slippery leaves, down muddy slopes, salamanders slide silently into the rising waters of their vernal pools,” are paired with richly colored illustrations of varying perspectives. The detailed pictures yield new information with each examination – an invitation to delve deeper.  

The final pages include a discussion that explains what vernal pools are and how they are created. Additional information on the natural history, migration, dancing, life-cycle, and diet of the salamander is provided along with a Glossary.

A perfect choice for nature lovers.

No comments:

The Gingerbread Cowboy Book Trailer