Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Non-Fiction Monday: Barnum Brown: Dinosaur Hunter (by David Sheldon)
Summary of Barnum Brown: Dinosaur Hunter (by David Sheldon):
On February 12, 1873, William and Clara Brown were blessed with a son. Inspired by the great showman P.T. Barnum, they named their child Barnum. Like his name sake, he grew into an extraordinary young man. His family farm was on a site that had once been an ocean. He loved spending his days exploring and finding fossils of ancient sea creatures. His family often read the newspaper accounts of great dinosaur discoveries. These experiences prompted Barnum to long to discover a new dinosaur. After studying paleontology, he landed a job at the American Museum of Natural History in New York. He was sent on in search of dinosaur fossils. His many discoveries are highlighted, leading scientists to a greater understanding of the field and prompting a fascination in the American public.
David Sheldon wrote and illustrated Barnum Brown: Dinosaur Hunter. The textured, multi-dimensional illustrations are a mixture of India ink, gouache, and acrylic paint. They often mix the fantastic with the realistic, illuminating Barnum’s imagination and reality. Sheldon pulls relevant details from Barnum’s early life to reveal how he developed his passion and work ethic. The high points of his professional contributions are depicted with enthusiasm and fascination. This book is a wonderful contribution to biography, history, and science. Much is published about the discoveries but little is readily available about those who helped develop and shape the knowledge we possess. I recommend Barnum Brown: Dinosaur Hunter as part of a dinosaur unit study or leisure reading at home. It is ideal for ages 7 and up.