Two of my favourite things, animals and mazes, combine in a fun and fact-filled non-fiction book.
Every year, animals around the world make incredible journeys. Some to find food, some to find the right environment to survive, others to give birth to their young. Some journeys are long, others are short, some take months, others can be made in a day. Discover the epic travels of fourteen awesome animals and find out what it takes to up and move home every single year…
Animazes is an enjoyable, engaging, educational and interactive read in which I found myself, an adult reader, learning plenty of awesome animal facts. Combining factual information about animals and exploring their migration journeys through brightly coloured mazes is a brilliant idea, the style of the book is something I have never experienced before and I love it. Coming up with new and innovative ways to capture the interest of children is always a challenge and Katie Howarth (author) and Melissa Castrillón (illustrator) have nailed a unique and highly creative approach to conveying animal migration patterns that will definitely grab the attention of the most reluctant of readers.
Animal coverage is vast, ranging from the small to the large, the quick to the slow, those that soar through the skies, those that swim through the waters and those that traverse the deserts, the land and the ice. Included amongst the fourteen animals are Christmas Island red crabs who take a week to complete their migration to the coast from their home in the central rainforests, the monarch butterfly that takes multiple generations to complete its two-way migration, Antarctic krill that complete a daily migration from the surface of the ocean and back into its depths, and the Arctic tern that completes one of the longest migrations on Earth as they fly between the Arctic Circle and Antarctica.
The double pages spreads are an absolute delight, they are vibrant, eye-catching and appealing. An illustrated maze of the migratory path invites readers to map the route that is needed for a successful migration. A red flag marks the start of each journey and a chequered flag indicates the finish, there are lots of paths to choose but only one correct way (if needed, answers to the maze routes are given at the back). Do not be fooled by the fun and friendly approach adopted by this book, there are some seriously cool facts and fascinating information contained within. Each animal is introduced via a short and sharp description of their migration journey and a wealth of accessible information presented as bite-sized facts, explanations and prompts are dotted along the maze pathways.
A very impressive non-fiction book that is as impressive as the animal journeys that it explores.
Recommended for 6+.