A noteworthy review of Comparing Animal Differences from Booklist on June 1, 2020
These simple but informative books in the Comparing Animal Differences series each cover two related (and frequently confused) animal species. After a brief introduction, each animal gets its own coverage in one chapter. A final chapter—called ’What’s the Difference?‘—compares and contrasts the two species. In Alligators and Crocodiles, Reed contrasts where alligators and crocodiles live (fresh versus saltwater), whether their teeth show or are hidden, and how long they care for their babies. In Llamas and Alpacas, the author points out that the two kinds of animals can ’have babies together’ before noting differences in their bodies, fur, and temperament. In Spiders and Daddy Long Legs, readers learn that only spiders can spin silk and webs and regrow lost legs. In Toads and Frogs, York acknowledges both the usual characteristics of each amphibian and the overlap between the two. The back matter for each book adds photos of the two animals with call-out labels highlighting various body parts or features, a glossary, print and online sources for further learning, an activity (to draw the two animals, showing their differences), and an index. Appealingly simple, with one large, often full-page photo per spread, these books contain just enough information for young readers, and the pairings add a special twist.