cover image The Dinosaur Who Lived in My Backyard

The Dinosaur Who Lived in My Backyard

B. G. Hennessy, Susan Davis. Viking Children's Books, $13.99 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-670-81685-9

About midway into this story, what has appeared to be a young boy's wishful thinking becomes a smooth piece of nonfiction, charmingly packed with facts by Hennessy. The narrator tells how the dinosaur hatched, how large it grew and how much it weighed, in scenes that are part of his backyard. But soon the backgrounds change, and the dinosaur becomes part of the past, playing with the other species now extinct, on land that only millions of years later would become this child's neighborhood. Davis, illustrator of When Daddy Comes Home and Waiting for Mom, adds an appealing number of odd perspectives in what is becoming her characteristic souped-up pastels: a dinosaur foot next to a sandbox; a dinosaur jumping into the air, much larger than the house behind it; the boy and his sister, with a bushel- and wagonfull of lima beans, hoping for the dinosaur's return. Ages 3-8. (March)