Funny families by Dr Mark Norman

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Black Dog Books, 2015. ISBN 9781922179975
(Age: 6-10) Highly recommended. Animals, Families, Non fiction. In a series of books about animals, Dr Norman of Museum Victoria promotes their oddity in the books, Funny bums, Funny faces and Funny homes. The fourth in the series, Funny families, promises to be just as informative, including a large dose of humour to engage younger readers. The front cover with its family of meerkats bunched together will intrigue readers to go further. The photographs sourced from a wide range of places, all acknowledged inside the front cover, support the spare text, as Dr Norman outlines the odd lives led by some animals.
Each double page offers a different perspective on several groups of animals, how many offspring the animal has, to who looks after the offspring, to learning about their environment, and finally leaving home.
The book takes the reader on the cycle of birth to independence, all with wonderfully informative photographs and a text which is pared back to give basic facts about that animal.
Several pages are my favourites. I love the pages entitled Difficult kids, with its images of an echidna, the spikes designed for protection, but being born spineless which helps with the rearing, and on the facing page is a shark and its offspring with information I had not come across before.
At the end of this lovely production is a short glossary, an easy to use index, and a double page with further information about some of the animals represented. All in all an informative easy to read book for primary people.
Fran Knight