Kingfisher Dinosaur Encyclopedia brings readers up to date on many current developments in dino science. Lavishly filled with photographs and paintings, and easily-read charts, it is a visual feast worthy of a hungry Allosaurus.
One of the best features: a focus on certain regions of dino discoveries. You will visit specific digs, sites in England, Portugal, and China, that yielded new discoveries in the last 10 to 20 years and pushed dino science forward. Many books lack this regional organization, making this one special. You get a picture of each unique biome certain dinos inhabited, where some books simply list dinos alphabetically or historically. The grouping also gives the writers a chance to share about current leaders in the field in these countries.
Kingfisher breaks up its pages into small blocks of text that the reader can take one at a time, or in chunks. Like any Megalosaurus could tell you, it’s easier to digest things when you break them into smaller peices first! This makes the book entertaining and light, but by no means insubstantial. A reader can simply enjoy highlights, or dig deeper.
From the 2000 specimens of a single Cretaceous bird unearthed in China, to the confident resolution of an old myth about Oviraptors, to the solid presentation of the meteorite impact site, Kingfisher gives new dino fans a great introduction, and updates us old dino fans about several solved mysteries.
Criticisms? Calling the book an Encyclopedia may be stretching it. It is not an exhaustive tome of the history of paleontology, or dino physiology, or even a complete list of all known species. I have several “encyclopedias” and scientific texts that are more intensive. They’re also a lot harder to read! So, although I wouldn’t call it an encyclopedia, it’s a worthy and exciting book.
The one missing bone in this skeleton is a pronunication key. Dino books lately have thrown this idea away, and Kingfisher’s isn’t the only culprit. Some help pronouncing the latest Chinese dinos would really help us read this out loud!
Glad to have this on my shelf with the other great dino books. Recommended for all ages, young and old.