cover image Rain Forest Secrets

Rain Forest Secrets

Arthur Dorros. Scholastic, $15.95 (40pp) ISBN 978-0-590-43369-3

This pedantically written, poorly organized introduction to rain forests concentrates on the tropical rain forest of the Amazon basin (which the author never mentions is in South America). A cursory examination of flora and fauna begins at the forest floor--with leafcutter ants, and trees with ``stilt'' or ``buttress'' roots--and works its way upward to the canopy, the top layer of trees. Following is a short discussion of the clearing of the rain forests and the global threat posed thereby. Important topics such as temperate rain forests, montane rain forests and mangrove forests are mentioned almost as afterthoughts. Belying the title's promise, there are no ``secrets'' revealed. Dorros's ( Me and My Shadow ) watercolors are painted in a naive style with little regard for perspective, a technique that seems unsuited to the text. Ages 6-9. (Sept.)