McLimans, David. Gone Wild: An Endangered Animal Alphabet. Illustrated by David McLimans. Walker, 2006. ISBN 9780802795632. $17.85. 40 p.
Reviewer: Holly Dickman
Reading Level: All
Genre: Informational books;
Subject: Endangered species--Juvenile literature; English language--Alphabet--Juvenile literature; Books--Reviews;
A is for Chinese Alligator in this creative alphabet book where each letter of the alphabet represents an animal on the endangered species list. Unique art on each page show characteristics of various wild animals through the letter that they represent. For example, the letter H is transformed into a Bushman Hare as large bunny ears stretch out the top of the letter, and a rabbit nose on the center line of the H. Along with each animal-designed letter, McLimans includes a small box of information which has a mini illustration of the animal, the class of the animal, where the animal lives, what threatens the animal, and the status of the animal on the endangered list.
Although the only colors in this book are black, red, and white, this animal alphabet demands attention. McLimans demonstrates the importance of captivating an audience through the pictures in this 2007 Caldecott honoree. Each page is set up in a clean, uncluttered fashion, easily leading the eyes to each creatively drawn letter and sidebar. At the end of the alphabet, the author has included a drawing and additional information for each animal featured in the book. This book will change the way its audience sees the alphabet and animals forever. Gone Wild would be a great addition to any home or school library accessible to young children, and would be especially interesting to animal lovers of all ages.
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