Endangered Animals: a World of Threatened Species

Authored by Martin Jenkins
Illustrated by Tom Frost
Published by Walker Studio

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Endangered Animals: a World of Threatened Species immediately draws you in by virtue of the subject matter. Then, as I explored the front cover with increased rigour, I noticed that Martin Jenkins (author) and Tom Frost (illustrator) have used the very clever idea of placing each endangered animal on a first class stamp.

‘Thirty endangered animals are calling for help like never before’. The blurb reached out, grabbed my hand and forced me to open the book. I read the book with a very special small man in my life. He was engrossed with every page. Each time we turned a leaf, he went straight to the stamp, called out the animal, we decoded their Latin name: Tapanuli Orangutans being ‘Pongo Tapanuliensis’, we explored their native habitat and the currency on the stamp. He then demanded to know all the background information about each animal, which can be found on the accompanying page. The layout is simple, and information clear and easy to read. We made sure we checked the fact files on each page and located them on the maps.

What struck me,  was how emotional yet inspiring this reading session became. I realised how ignorant I am to the plight of many animals that I have taken for granted as still existing in swathes. My reading buddy turned to me and with an empassioned voice and announced, ‘Im fed of humans doing this. When I’m older I’m going to be a scientist and save the animals’. He’s four, so I was in awe of his ambition! Endangered Animals: a World of Threatened Species should be compulsory in every reading area and every library of every school. As well as being aesthetically pleasing, it is important. As a teacher, it is a gift and as a human, it is a prompt.