Animal Pictures – Animal Kingdom Infographics by Nicholas Blechman

information-graphics-animal-kingdomI love infographics. I can lose hours staring at them. But whilst they’re pretty, and feel informative, I’m not sure how much of the information actually sticks. This could well be my mind, but I find Infographics are great to display a particular point, (where they can be very persuasive),  but I don’t find them useful for retaining factual knowledge. Having said that, I reiterate, I love infographics.

Animal Kingdom is a beautiful book. It’s vibrantly coloured, has tabbed pages for ease of use and contains all sorts of interesting tidbits of information contained within. It’s broken down into 8 sections. These are mostly unrelated to one another, and the order appears arbitrary (Species, Senses, Record Breakers, Food & Drink, Family, Habitats, Killers and Man’s Best Friend). This sections do not build on each other nor is the information grouped by species, habitat or location. That’s OK as the sections are well labelled, and the tabs to help you locate the section you are looking for. Having said that, there is no index. So if we were doing homework (for these book are aimed at children), we’d probably be more likely to plum for one of our more traditionally arranged books. The lack of index is, I think, a criminal oversight.

I gave the book to my 8 year old to read. He is probably at the lower end of the age range this book is aimed at. He liked it. The visuals he found interesting, and there isn’t too much text to switch him off. He did keep reading for a reasonable length of time.  His major comment was, he liked it, but ‘preferred books that were arranged by type of animal.’ As I said, he is at the lower end of the range of this book, and is still at that ‘I want to read about sharks’, phase of using non-fiction books. Animal Kingdom takes a more holistic approach to its information.

This is a nice book, made with high production values. It’s very pleasing to the eye, and it’s great to browse through. Quite what its longevity would be, I’m not so sure.  It strikes me as the sort of book that would sit on the shelf; admired but rarely used. As I own a host of infographics books that I rarely read, perhaps that’s a personal failing rather than one of the book. A lovely book then, but probably a luxury rather than an essential purchase.

Thanks to the team at Templar Publishing for sending me a copy of this book 



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