Being a young bunny, Caramel loves all small animals, but some he finds more endearing than others. Pangolins are among his favorites, and a search for a book on pangolins is what led him to Aye-Aye Gets Lucky, Adventures of a Pangopup, Okapi Loves His Zebra Pants, and Tarsier Sings His Song, the four books making up the Endangered and Misunderstood series written by Terri Tatchell and illustrated by Ivan Sulima. In this review, he shares his thoughts on these four lovely books that invite the reader to learn about the lives of some of the rarest animals on this planet. As usual, Sprinkles is taking notes and asking questions.
Sprinkles: Caramel, I know you love animals, and you love books with lots of facts in them. So how did these books measure?
Caramel: I liked them! They have some facts that I did not know, even about pangolins, and you know I know a lot about pangolins already. So there are a lot of facts in the books. But also they are all really colorful.
S: Yes, I noticed. All pages are very colorfully illustrated, and each of the books tells a story first. Yes, there are facts, but those are all at the end. The main chunk of each book is a story, right?
C: Yes, that is true. They all tell stories. And they are fun stories too.
S: So for example, tell us about the first book, Aye-Aye Gets Lucky. What is the story in the book about?
C: It is about an aye-aye who was feared and hated because he always played pranks on people. People thought he brought bad luck. But then he learned from a flying fox that maybe he could help the people and they would like him.
S: That is neat. But apparently the part about people thinking aye-ayes are bad luck is correct.
C: Yes, the facts in the back say that.
S: Did you know about aye-ayes before?
C: Yes, they are a type of lemur, but the story was fun to read, and the pictures were fun to look at. And I did not know most of the facts in the end of the book.
S: Okay, so the second book in this series is Adventures of a Pangopup. And I know you love pangolins, so I am guessing that you liked this book too.
C: Yes. I think pangolins are really cute and this book was cute too. Can we put a link to that website which has pictures of baby pangolins?
S: Sure, here it is: Pangopups: All About Baby Pangolins. So this book also starts with a story, right?
C: Yes. It is about a pangolin pup who is impatient and wants to go out on his own. His mom thinks he is too young, but he doesn’t listen. And he goes out and has fun and finds friends, but also gets into big trouble.
S: Yes, I can see this might be a good lesson for the pangopup.
C: Yes. And the story rhymes again, and it is funny, too.
S: I know you know all about pangolins. Did the facts pages have anything new for you?
C: I didn’t know they don’t have teeth! I also learned that the dik dik deer mates for life. Which is cool, I think.
S: These are both neat facts, Caramel!
S: Okay, on to the third book, Okapi Loves His Zebra Pants. What do you want to tell us about this book?
C: This one is very funny too. It is about an okapi, who is told by a prankster monkey that he is wearing a zebra’s pants. You see, an okapi is an animal whose back legs and behind have stripes like a zebra.
S: Did you know about okapis before?
C: Yes, but I did not know a lot about them. I only knew they had the stripes. But the book tells you ten facts about them, and I did not know any of them!
S: Ten facts about okapis and five about the African Grey.
C: Yes, so all the books have ten facts about the main animal, and five facts about the second animal in the book that the main animal is friends with. So for example, in Aye-Aye Gets Lucky, the aye-aye makes friends with a flying fox, so the five facts are about flying foxes. And in Adventures of a Pangopup, the pangolin baby makes friends with a dik dik deer, so there are five facts about the dik dik deer. So in Okapi Loves His Zebra Pants, the okapi is friends with an African Grey parrot, so we learn facts about them.
S: That is cool!
S: And finally let us talk a bit about the fourth and last book in the series, Tarsier Sings His Song. I’m guessing this is about a tarsier, whatever that is.
C: Yep. So a tarsier is a primate. And this time, there are eight facts about the main animal. Because there are also five facts each about two other animals: the cuscus bear and the crested macaque. And did you know that the bear cuscus is not really a bear? It is a marsupial!
S: Kind of like how a guinea pig is not a pig?
C: That’s true.
S: Did you know about tarsiers, cuscus bears, or crested macaques before? I did not.
C: I had read about all three of them actually, but I did not know for example that the tarsier is the only completely carnivorous primate.
S: That’s interesting Caramel. I thought primates were omnivorous.
C: Me too. So I learned a lot from this book too.
S: That is cool. What is the story in this book?
C: The tarsier is trying to find a mate by singing, and his friends try to help him sing better. And in the end everyone is happy, so I liked this book a lot.
S: And I liked reading all these books with you! They were long though.
C: Yes, each book is over twenty-five pages long. But the stories are really interesting and funny.
S: They are also very cute and sweet.
C: Those would be my three words for these books: funny, cute, and sweet.
S: I agree with your choices Caramel. Wasn’t it fun to learn about these different animals together?
S: You know they make up a series together, right?
C: Yes, they are called “Endangered and Misunderstood”.
S: True, everyone loves cute and fluffy animals but these animals are not known or cared for by many people. I know you love pangolins, but you are a pretty special bunny…
C: But these animals are going extinct! That’s what “endangered” means. Apparently, the money they will make from these books will go to conservation efforts for the main animal for each book. That’s what it says on the first page of each book.
S: That is really cool, don’t you think?
C: Yep. I’m glad we read these books. And maybe we can reread them some time.
S: Yes, that would be nice. This is a good time to wrap up this review, I think. What would you like to tell our readers, Caramel?
C: Stay tuned for more book bunny reviews!