How Do Dinosaurs Get Well Soon? by Jane Yolen & Mark Teague
Geared Towards: Ages 4-8
Published By: The Blue Sky Press (Scholastic)
Publication Date: February 2003
Jane Yolen is an author we've read many times, and I'm certain we must have read one or two of her other Dinosaur books. Yet, for the life of me I couldn't begin to tell you which or when. Hmpf. Guess that means I need to be on the look out for more books in this series when my 3 year old and I hit the library Monday. Why?, you ask. Because this was a stinkin' cute book.
How Do Dinosaurs Get Well Soon? is a beautifully illustrated fun look at what it might be like if human parents had dinosaurs for children. And we're not talking about just any old dinosaurs. No, we're talking about SICK dinosaurs. Just like real kids, the dinosaurs in this book don't seem to be keen on taking medicine, visiting the doctor, getting rest, and all the other things that go hand in hand with getting over a cold or sicky bug.
Each dinosaur is fighting his parent for the upper hand. Stubborn like any child forced to do anything they don't want to do, especially when sick, none of the dinosaurs in this book want to do what their mommies and daddies tell them will help make them better. But, much to this mother's delight, Yolen turns things around at the end of the story and shows the kids that even dinosaurs can follow the rules so that they can get better quickly.
Yolen does a fantastic job of making the scenes and setting realistic, so her young readers will be easily able to pick up on the similarities she's trying to draw attention to in regards to how the dinosaurs act and how most young children act when it comes to being sick. Perhaps kiddos everywhere reading this book will suddenly realize that nobody, not even big scary dinosaurs, likes to go through the process of recovering from being sick. It's unpleasant and yucky, yet if the dinosaurs decided they had to listen to their mommies, daddies, and doctors (and they're WAY bigger than all of them) then maybe the kiddos will realize they can do it to.
Mark Teague, the illustrator, has come up with some great, eye catching illustrations for this one. Each of his dinosaurs has a great expression on its face; so there's no doubting what he's feeling or thinking. Likewise, each dinosaur is, over all, very detailed and realistic looking (in that obviously illustrated way). Younger kids might not catch on or care much, but Teague has even managed to incorporate the name of each kind of dinosaur somewhere within it's own two page spread.
Great story, great illustrations, a book I can see picking up over and over again.
Last but not least... I'm not sure if this is a feature that comes with all the copies of this book or if it's maybe just with the hardback releases, however, the copy we borrowed from the library came with a read along audio cd. Read by the author, Yolen does a wonderful job of inflecting her voice and making the story fun to listen to. With two follow along formats to choose from, young readers can opt for either a version with a "turn the page" que or one without. My 3 year old wasn't interested in listening to the cd version as she was content to have mommy read it to her. I think I'll try sitting my 5 year old down with it later though. I'm sure she'd have a blast reading along with the author.
OUR RATING: 5 hearts