Fur, Fins, and Feathers: Abraham Dee Bartlett and the Invention of the Modern Zoo

Cassandre Maxwell. Eerdmans, $17 (34p) ISBN 978-0-8028-5432-2
Maxwell highlights how one man helped usher in new ideas of what zoos could be in the 19th century. Three-dimensional mixed-media collages give the pages a sense of activity and depth as Bartlett plays with and studies animals as a boy, gaining a reputation as a “walking animal encyclopedia” and eventually becoming superintendent of the London Zoo. There, he pioneered the idea of including information about the animals for visitors, as well as giving the creatures better nutrition and larger enclosures. “They... need spaces to explore, places to hide, and things to play with,” Maxwell says in one of a handful of unattributed quotations. A bibliography, time line, and author’s note round out a warm portrait of a man’s lifelong passion for animals, a passion that he shared widely. Ages 5–9. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 07/20/2015
Release date: 08/01/2015
Genre: Children's
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