cover image A Beetle Is Shy

A Beetle Is Shy

Dianna Hutts Aston, illus. by Sylvia Long. Chronicle, $16.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-4521-2712-5

Aston and Long follow A Butterfly Is Patient and other collaborations with a poetic examination of the vast insect order of beetles. As in the previous books, brief phrases (“A beetle is kaleidoscopic,” “A beetle is colossal”) introduce various characteristics, explored in crisp, accessible text that can be both general and species-specific (“[Fireflies] flash their signals to attract a mate, defend their territory, and warn away predators”). Long’s watercolors capture the vibrant details of the rainbow stag beetle, dead-nettle leaf beetle, and other striking specimens in a sparkling homage to a diverse category of insect. Ages 5–8. Author’s agent: Rosemary Stimola, Stimola Literary Studio. (Apr.)