Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

How Many Ways Can You Catch a Fly?

How Many Ways Can You Catch a Fly?

Steve Jenkins, Robin Page
Nonfiction Picture Book
For ages 5 to 8
Houghton Mifflin, 2008   ISBN: 978-0618966349

It is not easy to survive when you are a wild animal. You have to find or catch your food, do your best to make sure that your young survive, find or create a home or nest, and you have to do all of this while trying to stay alive!

In this unique picture book, Steve Jenkins and Robin Page explore how different animals have evolved strategies that allow them to succeed and thrive in their environments. They begin by looking at the ways in which six very different animals catch fish to eat. A group of dolphins creates a net of bubbles that encircles the fish they want to eat, and the matamata (a very odd looking species of freshwater turtle) opens its big mouth and expands its throat, which creates a “sudden suction” that pulls fish into its mouth.

Next, the creators of this book look at the clever ways that animals take care of their eggs. Earwig mothers, unlike most insect mothers, actually guard and tend their eggs. The Surinam toad has opted not to put its eggs in a nest at all. Instead, the male toad places the fertilized eggs on the spongy skin on the female’s back, and she carries her developing babies around with her.

Steve Jenkins and Robin Page then go on to look at the ways in which animals use leaves, they ways they catch flies to eat, the ways animals dig holes, and the ways animals eat a clam. At the back of the book, they provide readers with further information about all the animal species that are mentioned in the book.

With its gorgeous cut and torn paper collage artwork, and its fact packed text, this book is a must for young readers who like animals.