In the Spring/Summer 2013 edition, Chair of Trustees Lin Wenlock reviewed Steve Backshall’s Deadly Factbook: Reptiles and Amphibians. Published by Orion Children’s Books, London. ISBN 978-1-4440-0831-9.
This handy book was aimed at young people, and thanks to Orion Publishing we gave away a copy of this and the Mammals book in the series.
“Reading this book as an adult and trying to picture it through the eyes of a youngster was interesting.
It will appeal to those interested in Natural History and is very educational, with many fascinating facts on various species of amphibians and reptiles. It is a lively, colourful book, with some very good photos and drawings. The content is taken from the experiences of Steve Backshall and will be a sure win with his many young fans, who live in awe of his fearless activities with many dangerous species.
However, whilst I did enjoy reading the facts, I was not so impressed with some of the photographs, for example where Steve has pythons and boa constrictors around his body, or is holding venomous snakes. This, I know, is to add excitement, but does it teach that this is the right thing to do, does it encourage youngsters respect for the animals, or will they poke them to see what the reaction is? I’m not sure.
Would this stop me buying the book for my grandson who is of the age who treats Steve as a hero? No, it would not, it is an informative publication, and will hopefully introduce more young people
to the amazing world of amphibians and reptiles. However, I would be tempted to add a warning – look, but don’t touch!”