"Artful digital collage makes it easy to imagine memorable modern encounters with a hippo-eating snake and other extinct creatures. Except for a species of dwarf elephant that was about the same size as the sheep among which it poses here, the animals on display were all outsized--ranging from the evocatively named Titanoboa and a hawk-sized dragonfly dubbed Meganeura to 8-foot-long prehistoric beavers and the armored frog Beelzebufo. Mendez superimposes photorealistic digital images of each into contemporary settings, often to dramatic effect: the aforementioned amphibian is posed nose to nose with a German shepherd, for instance, and a white woman looks understandably shocked at the 7-foot-long Arthropleura, a Carboniferous millipede, rearing up on her kitchen counter. Along with an opening overview and closing notes about fossil-hunting, Rake supplies basic facts about each creature's size, range, and probable habits. Rake and Mendez repeat the formula for equally memorable scenarios in the co-published Prehistoric Giants, Prehistoric Predators, and Prehistoric Sea Beasts. Armchair thrills aplenty for Anthropocene readers."--Kirkus Reviews--Journal
"Combining a clever use of digital photography with well-researched material, this thoroughly engaging series reimagines prehistoric creatures inhabiting our contemporary world. Whether it's a paraceratherium strolling down a modern New York City avenue (Giants) or a giant sea scorpion enclosing an unfortunate scuba diver in its monstrous pincers (Sea Beasts), illustrator Mendez's artistic renderings are scarily authentic, and when superimposed within the scenes of daily life, the effect is simultaneously jarring and thrilling. Rake's meticulous fact-finding makes great use of sidebars to share standard information about each beast, such as name pronunciation, measurements, when and where it lived, and human-to-creature size comparisons, while introducing more specific, descriptive details in each entry's narrative. Finer points such as these as well as handy time lines and the inclusion of paleontology career options combine to make this easy-to-read but hard-to-put-down series one of a kind. VERDICT Whether dinosaur fans or not, readers of all ages will enjoy this visually stunning, informative, and, at times, humorous look at prehistory--libraries won't want to miss out."--School Library Journal--Journal
The ocean is filled with giant, strange, and scary creatures such as whales, octopuses, and sharks—but the prehistoric megalodon was powerful enough to crush a killer whale. Other sea beasts of the past could hold their own against even the most mysterious of modern sea creatures. Sea scorpions had claws the size of tennis rackets. Tanystropheus used its long neck to catch fish from land. And Leedsichthys had as many as 40,000 teeth! What would happen if these extinct beasts came to life? Imagine prehistoric sea beasts chasing dolphins, fighting crocodiles, and hunting humpback whales—and learn all about the prehistoric creatures of the deep!