Cloud Forest Insects

Hold onto your hats, you are about to enter the cloud forests of Central America. You will be traveling with scientist and adventurer Randall Barnes. Hope you brought your insect net, because you are going to be  hunting eight exotic and beautiful insects. You need to bring back specimens for an exhibit at the museum, so keep a sharp lookout. field-guide-to-Insects

That’s the exciting feel of The Field Guide to Insects: Explore the Cloud Forests by Paul Beck. With a glorious mix of photographs and colorful illustrations, each page has the look of a nature journal written in the field. The cover is textured to make it feel worn. You can almost smell the dampness and hear the monkeys screeching.

Even better, each page is full of amazing facts to read about each insect. That is, to read if you can keep from opening the enticing pouches attached to the pages. Inside each pouch is a model insect to assemble. I have to admit my son had those open in a flash and we had the diorama in the back all set up before reading the rest. The models are excellent for kinesthetic and visual learners. Both will be highly engaged by this book. The most reluctant reader you know will not be able to put this book down, if they are at all interested in nature or adventure.

The Field Guide to Insects: Explore the Cloud Forests is coming out this summer, and would be perfect for one of those days when the kids say, “I’m bored. There’s nothing to do.” After making the models, setting up the diorama and reading, they are sure to be inspired to go on their own bug hunts and to make their own nature journal. The book is so filled with creativity and imagination, it is guaranteed to stimulate all sorts of stories and projects.

I already had found and loved Tarantulas Inside and Out, published by SilverDolphin. Now I have seen this one, I am totally enamored with their books. They are absolutely wonderful!

Reading level: Ages 4-8
Hardcover: 32 pages
Publisher: Silver Dolphin Books (June 1, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1607100932
ISBN-13: 978-1607100935

Note:  Although Amazon lists the reading level as ages 4-8, the book says it is for ages 8 and up, which would  a better estimation. I would say that assembling the models does require a certain amount of fine motor skill and those younger than 8 would probably need assistance from an adult. The author is not afraid to use advanced entomological terms, either.

This book was provided for review by the publisher.


Nonfiction Monday is a blogging celebration of nonfiction books for kids. For more information, stop by Picture Book of the Day. This week’s post is at Check It Out.