Wild Lives: 50 Extraordinary Animals that Made History

Publisher: Nosy Crow

In this fascinating and touching book, children can learn about 50 courageous creatures from around the world and throughout history.

The bright and beautiful illustrations from Sarah Walsh capture the sheer colourful variety of the animals on offer and give it a fresh and contemporary look. The book is also ripe with juicy detail, so is a good way for children to learn lots of facts from history without even realising! 

Full of quotes about the animals and period references, Ben Lewill lays out these stories with enough simplicity and wonder to inspire kids to consider the richness of animals and why we should treat them with respect and care. 

There are also some extraordinary tales here, which really do fall under the 'Surely that can't be true?' category: from a giraffe who strode through French towns to a horse that apparently knew mathematics. Although some of the stories have a downbeat ending, the tone is positive and inspiring and should divert any focus on that.

Although lovely for sharing with younger primary-age children, there is quite a lot of text in each section, so is probably best for more confident independent readers. 

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