cover image Who Is the Beast?

Who Is the Beast?

Keith Baker, Patricia Baker. Harcourt Children's Books, $16 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-15-296057-5

Traces of the beast are detected by the other forest animals as a magnificent young tiger makes his way through the jungle. The swipe of a majestic striped tail, the flash of hypnotic green eyes and the gleam of pristine white from the underside of massive paws flicker in the undergrowth. As the patterns and colors of the densely foliated habitat become familiar, so the parallels between creatures become obvious. One whiskered face studies another as the tiger stares past his own reflection to a whiskered fish beneath the surface. One pair of green eyes beholds a mirror image when the tiger comes upon a snake. As each creature's unique structure is made evident, a lesson about the tremendous value of the animals and plants that inhabit our world speaks softly through Baker's ( The Magic Fan ) rhythmic text. The luxuriant artwork blends the use of dark, saturant color and dry over dry painting to create stunning spreads. Graced with a compelling beauty, this gifted author/illustrator's imaginative story presents a timeless message to young readers. Ages 3-7. (Sept.)