Thursday, November 7, 2019

Review - Will You Miss Us If We Go?

Will You Miss Us If We Go? (If We're Gone)
by Paige Jaeger
illustrated by Carol Hill Quirk
Date: 2019
Publisher: BQB Publishing
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book non-fiction
Pages: 40
Format: e-book
Source: NetGalley

Journey through book two in the If We're Gone series, in which the addas, red panda, cheetah, tapir, lemur, lynx and other endangered animals tell their stories and speak about the trouble they're in. Featuring rhyming text and interesting facts, this beautifully illustrated book is perfect for opening up conversations with animal-loving little ones about protecting threatened species.

(synopsis from Goodreads)

This book is kind of uneven. The overall idea of conservation is good... but then it's undermined by repeatedly encouraging children to visit zoos. Some of the watercolour illustrations are lovely... but others have issues that make them downright creepy (I don't even know what happened to that poor orangutan). The short poems rhyme... but there's no consistent metre. The glossary of difficult words at the end is helpful... but not always that accurate ("peril" doesn't mean "something bad that happens"; it would've been easier--and more accurate--to define that word as "danger").

I don't like the part about vultures, either. The assertion that, without them, sickness would run rampant is kind of an irresponsible thing to put in a children's book without more explanation. (It's mentioned twice, and I still don't understand what the mechanism is.) Kids who worry are liable to find this troublesome.

I just can't get past the zoo-pushing. The other suggestions for helping animals (volunteer, live wisely, and recycle) are just too vague to be of much use. While I agree that habitat destruction, poaching, and pollution are all adversely affecting animals, suggesting that kids can help by visiting zoos--which often have their own problems with animal welfare--isn't the solution.

Thank you to NetGalley and BQB Publishing for providing a digital ARC.

Premise: 3/5
Meter: 2/5
Writing: 2/5
Illustrations: 3/5
Originality: 2/5

Enjoyment: 1/5

Overall: 2 out of 5

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