Friday, September 4, 2009

Kudlinski, Kathleen V.: Boy, Were We Wrong About Dinosaurs

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A spirited text and humorously detailed line-and-color illustrations discuss the evolving nature of dinosaur research, emphasizing the ways recent discoveries have changed the ways paleontologists understand the always-fascinating creatures. Using the refrain, "Boy, were we wrong ... !" Kudlinski introduces early thinking about the giant reptiles and then juxtaposes it with our current knowledge: For example, early drawings of dinosaurs show them dragging their tails, but the lack of tail drag marks in thousands of fossil footprints and close examination of tailbones have led scientists to conclude that dinosaurs held their tails out and used them for balance. Schindler's freely-inked illustrations use fauxantique effects to illustrate old thinking, while current theories feature colorful, full-bleed paintings, giving personality to their subjects without undue anthropomorphizing. Throughout, readers are encouraged to question received knowledge (and older library books), always acknowledging that the science keeps changing. An opening that encourages readers to laugh up their sleeves at the "ignorance" of ancient Chinese scholars on the subject of dinosaurs is an unfortunate detour into exoticism in a text that otherwise treats both readers and subject with respect and enthusiasm. (timeline, bibliography) (Picture book/nonfiction. 5-8)

Named Works: Boy, Were We Wrong about Dinosaurs! (Book) Book reviews

Source Citation:"Kudlinski, Kathleen V.: Boy, Were We Wrong About Dinosaurs!(Brief Article)(Children's Review)(Book Review)." Kirkus Reviews 73.20 (Oct 15, 2005): 1140(1). Academic OneFile. Gale. BROWARD COUNTY LIBRARY. 4 Sept. 2009

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