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I (Don't) Like Snakes Hardcover – September 8, 2015
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From School Library Journal
K-Gr 2—Readers may agree with the young serpent-loathing protagonist of this book, but her family doesn't. When they respond to her declaration "I really, really, REALLY don't like snakes!" with a resounding "WHY?" the stage is set for a series of complaints. With each argument, the girl finds herself backsliding. Her objections—slithering movements, slimy skin, flicking tongues, and staring eyes—are all overcome with explanations and rebuttals. Soon she is sharing interesting facts with her family, and (no surprise here) she finally announces her change of heart. Pet snakes that are reminiscent of those in Tomi Ungerer's Crictor (HarperCollins, 1958) are everywhere to be found, while snake skins decorate the family's furniture, shoes, rugs, walls, and the book's endpapers. Cartoon artwork and italicized text are used for the fictional story, while a more realistic art style with standard text for factual elements. Most snakes are identified, and brief back matter adds additional information. VERDICT While many readers won't be as easily converted as the book's narrator, this title may spur them on to learn more.—Carol S. Surges, formerly at Longfellow Middle School, Wauwatosa, WI
From funny ("The snake wriggles out of its skin the way you pull your foot out of a sock, leaving the old skin inside out!") to shiver-inducing ("They have fangs that are hollow, like a doctor's needle, which inject venom. They strike like lightning"), the facts are captivating. Mixed-media drawings feature energetically scruffy lines and vibrant colors, and multiple scenes appear per page, showing the family at home and snakes in the wild. One close-up drawing of multicolored snake heads, emphasizing their varying lidless eyes, is downright beautiful...The protagonist isn't the only one who will find snakes spellbinding by the end.
—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
Lozano expertly shifts between scribbly cartoons of the family and more naturalistic drawings of snakes and their anatomy, accompanied by information-packed captions from Davies...The book’s blend of playfulness and scientific detail make it a winner.
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
While many readers won’t be as easily converted as the book’s narrator, this title may spur them on to learn more.
—School Library Journal
Davies perfectly balances the gross, cool, and scary to help readers appreciate this much-maligned reptile. Lozano’s illustrations extend this tone, adding humor and additional narrative to portrayals of the family as well as careful detailing of snake species in the more informative sections.
—The Horn Book
Although this might not cure ophidiophobia, its duo design will let it slide easily into a storytime setting or into the hands of older readers looking for more detailed information about snakes.
This book would make a clever mentor text for classroom animal reports, encouraging readers and writers to think deeply about the creative ways to present both narratives and information.
This is a worthwhile addition to the elementary school library, and could be useful to entice the reluctant nonfiction reader to give the genre a try.
—School Library Connection
Top customer reviews
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There are times that facts and knowledge help us overcome our fears. Each time this young girl tells her family why she doesn't like snakes, they tell her a little more about these amazing creatures. "Snakes HAVE to slither," said my mom. "They don't have legs, so they bend like an S and use their ribs and scales to grip. It's the only way they can move." Davies then provides more information about different types of motions: concertina slithering, serpentine slithering and caterpillar crawling.
This skillful blend of humor and information models a terrific way of overcoming our fears by learning more about them.
This book is funny, creative and smart.
Published by Candlewick Press.
#snakes #NF #PB #facts #cool