I have read all three of the books by Sy Montgomery in the Houghton Mifflin “Scientists in the Field” series for kids in the 9 to 12 range. They are excellent. All have wonderful photos by Nic Bishop that accompany a fascinating text. The Snake Scientist discusses the thousands of red-sided garter snakes that hibernate at the Narcisse Wildlife Management Area in Manitoba, Canada, and the scientist Bob Mason‘s work with them. The Tarantula Scientist not only discusses tarantulas and the tarantula-obsessed arachnologist Sam Marshall who studies them, but also includes a lot of marvelous information about spiders in general. The latest book in the series is Quest for the Tree Kangaroo: An Expedition to the Cloud Forest of New Guinea, and follows scientist Lisa Dabek, who has been studying the elusive Matschie’s tree kangaroo in Papua New Guinea’s cloud forest for over two decades.
Each book includes further information, websites, bibliography and INDEX. How many nonfiction books for adults also have an index today? If you could only purchase one of these books, I’d be hard-put to choose, but I guess the tree kangaroo would be first, closely followed by the tarantula and then the snake book. I only wish I had had access to such books when I was young and when my kids were young.