How to Clean a Hippopotamus: A Look at Unusual Animal Partnerships

by Robin Page and Steve Jenkins

Steve Jenkins’s trademark symbiosis of engaging text and detailed, dynamic... read more

Steve Jenkins’s trademark symbiosis of engaging text and detailed, dynamic collage images is perfectly suited to the exploration of the (usually) mutually beneficial relationships between a host of different creatures. Jenkins adapts a graphic novel design format, using panels on each page or page spread to tell the story of each creature’s role in the symbiotic relationship. The tiny boxer crab, for example, uses sea anemones to defend itself from large fish, waving the anemones’ deadly tentacles like a boxer waving gloves. In return, the anemones receive stray bits of food when the boxer crab eats. A book that invites dabbling as well as reading straight through includes additional information about symbiosis and each of the volume’s subjects in the closing pages. (Ages 9–13)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2011

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