Animalium by Katie Scott and Jenny Broom
Five Mile Press RRP $39.95
Gloriously illustrated, Animalium is presented as a printed “museum” with more than 160 animal specimens, with each chapter featuring a different branch of the tree of life, from the simple sponge to the enormous elephant, accompanied by informative text. A beautiful book in every way.
Wonders of the Plant Kingdom: A Microcosm Revealed
by Wolfgang Stuppy, Rob Kesseler & Madeline Harley
Papadakis / Kew Royal Botanic Gardens RRP $40.00
Science, art and technology merge in this stunning pictorial-led explanation of the anatomy of plants. Hundreds of images of plants taken with a scanning electron microscope have been hand-coloured by artist Rob Kesseler to reveal the extraordinary complexity of plants. The images are complemented by explanations of how plants have adapted to a multitude of different conditions around the world.
Tales of Remarkable Birds by Dominic couzens
Bloomsbury Natural History RRP $39.99
This is a delightful book looking at five birds from every continent that stand out for their looks, their behaviour, their clever adaptations to their environment, the myths that surround the bird or a combination of these factors. Beautiful photographs accompany the three-to-four page sketches of each bird. The only problem with this approach is that some of the sketches may leave you looking for more. Nevertheless it is a wonderful book to browse highlighting the extraordinary diversity of birds.
Creatures of the night by Joe Mcdonald and Mary Ann Mcdonald
New Holland RRP $35.00
And what beautiful creatures they are – the bats, the foxes and wolves, the big cats and other mammals that come out to hunt and feed while the rest of the world sleeps. This is a comprehensive, beautifully photographed guide to the world after dark, including the nightlife of reptiles and amphibians, birds and even invertebrates. Then, as a bonus, the final chapter is an excellent guide to how you might tackle the complicated task of taking your own wildlife pictures at night.
Heartland by the Australian Conservation Foundation
Echo RRP $49.95
This beautiful book celebrates 50 years of the Australian Conservation Foundation through pictures of the remarkable island continent. The original photography is by MAPgroup documentary photographers, a non-profit association of around 40 people ranging from emerging photographers to well-established award-winning professionals. This work is a remarkable testament to the foundation’s dedication to preserving natural beauty, but also acknowledges the human place within the natural landscape.
Infographics: Space –Understand the facts in the blink of an eye by Jennifer Daniel
Big Picture Press / Hardie Grant RRP $24.95
This is a wonderful and informative book to browse with infographical data presented in attractive and inventive ways that are likely to grab a child’s attention and help them focus on the facts. Divided into seven key topics, the book looks at: The Universe, Galaxies and Stars, The Solar System, The Sun, the Earth and Moon, Observing Space and Exploring Space. It is billed as recommended for ages 8+ but make that 8+++ because people from all ages right up to adult will find plenty in this clever little book that is amusing and informative.
Bill Condie is a science journalist based in Adelaide, Australia.
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