Hughes, Catherine D. First Big Book of Animals, 128 pgs. National Geographic, 2010. $14.95. NONFICTION. This book is an introduction to animals created for “little kids” using fantastic photographs and fun facts that the children can relate to. The lay-out includes small paragraphs of information next to corresponding pictures, small word bubbles of interesting tidbits, and facts. The “facts” for each animal include: kind of animal, home, size, food, sounds, and babies (how many are born at a time). The “size” facts can include weight or height in comparison to things children can relate to. For example, Harp Seals weight about the same amount as a NFL player (p. 107). While the size relations are fun, the exact pounds or inches should have also been included. The book also includes two pages of tips for parents to “extend [their] child’s experience” which include a variety of activities. A color-coordinated animal map of the world shows kids where each animal calls home. A glossary and index are also included at the end to clarify terms and help kids and parents find exact pages. Both children and adults will be drawn to this beautifully put together book and the fascinating information inside. EL – Essential. Samantha, Public Librarian.