'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Sunday 3 April 2022

Review: Built By Animals

Animals are clever creatures. All around us, sometimes visible and sometimes not, they create and live in ways that also inspired humans.

Built By Animals introduces us to some of the innovations that animals use to build their homes and live their lives.

The book is divided into five categories: construction, materials, shapes, energy, and water. Each section features examples from the natural world.

Some animals are well known for their cleverness. Beavers and their dam building, the strong honeycomb hives of bees, and camels with their amazing ability to save water (though did you know it's the way their nose works that helps them do so?).

The secrets of other animals are perhaps less well known. Peacocks are famous for their beautiful tail feathers. What you might not know is that the changing colours appear when tiny ridges on the feathers scatter the light. The strong, lightweight and layered abalone shell can provide inspiration for building, and the way bees work together has inspired computer and robot technology.

26 different creatures feature in Built By Animals. One that I had never heard of was the Venus's flower basket sponge, which is an animal, not a plant. Its skeleton inspired the London building that is known as 'The Gherkin'!

All the animals and their worlds are depicted in colourful illustrations and diagrams, including some cross sections.

Built By Animals is a great book for kids who love understanding how things work. They will soon have lots of trivia to share and ideas for their own building projects.

Title: Built By Animals
Author: Christine Dorian
Illustrator: Yeji Yun
Publisher: Wide Eyed Editions, $ 24.99
Publication Date: 29 March 2022
Format: Hardcover
ISBN: 9780711265684
For ages: 7+
Type: Junior Non-fiction