Review of Solitary Animals: Introverts of the Wild

Solitary Animals: Introverts of the Wild
by Joshua David Stein; illus. by Dominique Ramsey
Primary    Rise/Penguin Workshop    48 pp.    g
2/22    978-0-593-38443-5    $18.99
e-book ed.  978-0-593-38544-9    $11.99

Most animals live in groups, but some live most of their lives by themselves. Stein introduces four solitary species and contrasts their contented solo lifestyles with social animals in similar habitats. In describing the social animals, their colorful collective nouns are used: after a parade of elephants, tower of giraffes, and dazzle of zebras arrive at a waterhole, the panther appears “by herself” without additional descriptors. Similarly, an octopus and an eagle are contrasted with sea and air animals, respectively, which include a pod of whales, school of fish, huddle of hummingbirds, and kit of pigeons. A lone sloth receives no comparisons but is instead amusingly portrayed moving very slowly as a single short sentence unfolds across a three-spread sequence: “The sloth is… / …a solitary… / …animal, too.” The visually stunning and dynamic illustrations favor inky black, indigo, and light blue backgrounds, in front of which the contrastingly colorful animals seem to glow. A section titled “More about Solitary Animals” provides brief answers to questions young children might ask as they compare their feelings about aloneness with those of the creatures.

From the January/February 2022 issue of The Horn Book Magazine.

Danielle J. Ford
Danielle J. Ford
Danielle J. Ford is a Horn Book reviewer and an associate professor of Science Education at the University of Delaware.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing.