From School Library Journal
Grade 1-3-- Illustrated in bright, clear watercolors accented with pastels, this picture-book introduction could be used by beginning readers or as a read-aloud. The text is excellent, beginning with the fact that whales are air-breathing, warm-blooded mammals, and then outlining their variation in size and evolutionary history. Gibbons describes the two groups of whales--toothed and baleen--delineating their differences not only in physiology but also in behavior. Representative members of each group are pictured and given a one-or-two line description. Each drawing is labeled, and a helpful pronunciation guide accompanies difficult or unfamiliar words. Some of the illustrations, however, are overly cute and personified, with full, almost pouty, lower lips and facial expressions. The grinning belugas swimming around the blue whale are a little disconcerting. A one-page section called "Whale Tales" presents such factual tidbits as "A blue whale eats about 4,400 pounds of krill a day" and "A sperm whale can dive down more than a half mile." An attractive additional purchase. --Frances E. Millhouser, Reston Regional Library, VA
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.
About the Author
Gail Gibbons grew up writing stories and drawing pictures to fit the words, and wishing she lived in the country. After graduating from the University of Illinois with a bachelor of fine arts degree, she became involved in television graphics. This led her to work on a children's TV show, where her desire to write and illustrate children's books was rekindled. Eventually Gail became a full-time writer and moved to rural Vermont, where she could have a garden and as many pets as she wanted. Gail has written more than 140 books and has made countless visits to schools. The feedback she gets from children is invaluable and often inspires ideas for future projects. Gail and her husband, Kent Ancliffe, have a dog named Wilbur and two cats, named Miles and Davis. They live in Vermont in a passive solar house that Gail's husband built and on an island off the coast of Maine.