Lynn: I’ve yet to meet anyone who doesn’t smile upon seeing a picture of a sloth and I guarantee the two books in today’s post will spend very little time on the library shelf! There is something about these unique and fascinating creatures that we humans respond to immediately.
Happy Sloth Day (S&S/Beach Lane, 2022) by the acclaimed author April Pulley Sayre and photographer co-author Jeff Sayre. This wife and husband team spent 8 years photographing sloths in the Panamanian rain forest and learning about this truly amazing animal. The book is a terrific blend of poetry, eye-catching photographs and solid factual information. It is wonderfully child-centered in every way. The poetry is a delight to read aloud, loaded with vivid colorful language.
A tree is a sloth salad
Rip! Snip! Chew. Chew”
Jeff Sayre’s photographs are masterful and a real joy to see. Since these creatures live high in the rain forest canopy, the sheer difficulty of the photographic work is especially notable. Sidebars provide extensive factual information about the sloths and the creatures they interact with. In the back matter, two pages of additional sloth science is presented. This is an absolutely delightful book to read for pleasure and equally well suited to non-fiction reading and reports.
The Adventures of Dr. Sloth: Rebecca Cliffe and Her Quest to Protect Sloths (Millbrook, 2022) by Suzi Eszterhas.
Another outstanding wildlife photographer and author, Suzi Eszterhas also has a fascinating book with enchanting photographs and solid factual information about sloths. Her book, however, focuses on a scientist who is currently doing ground-breaking work studying this complex animal. Very little was actually known about sloths, partly because studying them is a difficult challenge. Eszterhas and Cliffe have become friends and the book presents an excellent look at what the work of a biologist is really like from examining sloth poo, to scaling giant trees to creating sloth backpacks to track and record daily activities of a wild sloth.
Cliffe, who wanted to be a scientist from a very young age, is also deeply involved in sloth conservation as these amazing creatures are threatened in their habitats.Information is provided on how young readers can help protect sloths and back matter includes a glossary, and list of additional resources.
These two outstanding books are must purchases and will have instant waiting lists!