This book gives the young reader a basic introduction to butterflies through gorgeous, vibrant pictures that are complemented with simple-to-read text. The first half of the book starts at the birth of a caterpillar through its journey in becoming a butterfly. The remaining pages discuss how butterflies see, taste, smell, and eat.  At the end, there is a photo index which lists all photos in the book and their caterpillar and butterfly species’ names.

The author has thrown in some interesting tidbits that will surprise any child and maybe even the parent. Did you know there are butterflies with see through wings!

My five-year old who has recently started to drift away from books (hopefully, only temporary) did enjoy this book very much. I think it served as a nice change from the fiction books we had been reading. Also this book gave her the opportunity to learn new facts. My three-year old on the other hand wanted to know why there were no pink butterflies. This book left me yearning for a longer book with more information and vibrant pictures of butterflies. Luckily, there is another book by this author called Butterflies and Moths which I do plan to check out from the library.

If you want to see hundreds of monarch butterflies and happen to be in the Monterey Bay Area in Northern California,  I highly recommend visiting the Monarch Grove Sanctuary in Pacific Grove. The best time to see the butterflies is between October and March, and preferably when the temperature is above 55 degrees. Below that temperature they just sit on the branches with their wings folded, looking like dead leaves.

Grab this book and learn something new with your child.

Author/Photographer: Nic Bishop


NOTE: This book was nominated by Mary Ann Scheuer for the 2011 Cybils Awards in the Easy Reader/Early Chapter Book category. I am a first-round panelist in this category, but this review reflects my opinions only, not those of any other panelist, or the panel as a whole. Thanks!


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