cover image A Mammal Is an Animal

A Mammal Is an Animal

Lizzy Rockwell. Holiday House, $17.95 (40p) ISBN 978-0-8234-3670-5

In this gently illustrated companion to A Bird Is a Bird, a father takes his son and daughter on a walk with their dog through the farm and woodland near their home. As they explore, Rockwell introduces the characteristics of mammals (such as having a skeleton and spine, being warm-blooded, and breathing air) and asks readers whether certain animals meet the criteria: “A ladybug is an animal. A ladybug has body parts that are hard. But is a ladybug a mammal? No!” Animals that do fit the bill include humpback whales, harbor seals, white-headed capuchin monkeys, and African elephants. While readers may need clarification that not all of the featured animals share a habitat—and don’t all live in places like the area the characters are exploring—they’ll learn plenty about the ways that animals are categorized and classified. Ages 4–7. (Feb.)