Do you have an animal lover in your home? What about a puzzler? Perhaps you have a non-fiction fan? They are in luck with Beastly Puzzles a very unique, one of a kind new picture book arriving on bookshelves May 7th. Rachel Poliquin’s debut book for children poses the question to the reader: given a set of unrelated objects, can you guess the animal? A fabulously engaging way to look at non-fiction and really hook children into reading and learning more about some really interesting animals. The riddles are just tricky enough to solve, they really require you to think about it and make connections to what you already know about animals. Rachel Poliquin models the book after the descriptions of early naturalists, describing exotic animals by likening their features after more commonly known animals or even household objects.
The illustrations by Byron Eggenschwiler hearken back to an earlier age, feeling retro in a modern way. Bold, monochromatic layouts reveal the animals described with a wealth of information about their features and characteristics. Each layout features a fold out page hiding the animal and all of the animal information beneath.
I’m so impressed by the unique and excellent quality non-fiction books children have at their fingertips. Learning is so much more fun when given all of the wonderful new resources available to children and educators. What a fun activity to try with a class of children, creating their own beastly puzzles. I definitely would have used this as an mentor text for my students to enhance their unit on animals and life cycles.