Big Red Kangaroo
By Claire Saxby; illus. by Graham Byrne
32 pages; ages 5-8
Candlewick Press, 2014
It’s cold here in upstate New York. Cold enough to have me dreaming of earth-baked sand and warm breezes. Which makes this book a perfect choice for today – especially as the illustrations are rendered in warm oranges, yellows, and reds.
Red kangaroo lives in the center of Australia, where it’s summer now. He is the leader of a mob – that’s what you call a group a females, joeys, and young males. As dusk falls, Red leads his mob in search of breakfast.
Author Claire Saxby takes us into a day with Red and his mob. Along the way she offers insights into kangaroo culture. We learn that kangaroo tails aid balance – but also act as rudders when you’re hopping full speed ahead. We meet wallaroos, thorny devils, and large lizards called goannas. We avoid dingoes and watch Red fight off a male who challenges his dominance.
This is a great book to pair with Winnie-the-Pooh – especially when you read about Kanga and Roo. For one thing, kids will discover that there are more than 60 different species of kangaroo. Even cooler: their family name is macropod, which means “big foot”. Back matter includes an author’s note and an index.
Today is STEM Friday. Head over to the STEM Friday blog to see what other bloggers are reviewing. Review copy provided by publisher.