Synopses & Reviews
Where did we come from?
It's a simple question, but not so simple an answer to explain — especially to young children. Charles Darwin's theory of common descent no longer needs to be a scientific mystery to inquisitive young readers. Meet Grandmother Fish.
Told in an engaging call and response text where a child can wiggle like a fish or hoot like an ape and brought to life by vibrant artwork, Grandmother Fish takes children and adults through the history of life on our planet and explains how we are all connected.
The book also includes comprehensive backmatter, including:
- An elaborate illustration of the evolutionary tree of life
- Helpful science notes for parents
- How to explain natural selection to a child
"With simple text and vibrant, cheerful illustrations, this picture book offers a lively, accessible introduction to the theory of evolution to younger children.... Though this is a complicated topic, the simplified presentation, cumulative format, and scrutiny-inviting visuals nicely illustrate evolutionary connections and provide a great starting point for further discussions. Back matter, geared toward adults, offers information on the book’s content and suggestions to help further explain concepts." Booklist
"A dynamite job... gorgeously illustrated... Grandmother Fish is a fun way to start children down a path of scientific literacy and, what's more, can help instill in them a vital sense of connection with the living world." NPR
"This groundbreaking volume makes the complex theory of evolution accessible to young children... a truly inclusive work. The words and illustrations work beautifully together, showcasing the abilities of our ancestors and asking readers and listeners if they can do these same actions.... Exemplary back matter includes a colorful, clearly labeled double-page diagram titled 'Our Evolutionary Family Tree,' which is excellent for close examination and discussion; examples of how to explain concepts of evolution to children; and suggestions for correcting common misunderstandings. VERDICT This selection can be revisited again and again as students refine their understanding of evolution. Highly recommended for homes, schools, and libraries." School Library Journal
About the Author
Jonathan Tweet has been an innovative game designer for over 25 years and a fan of evolution for even longer. His award-winning games are well-known for engaging the players’ imaginations and encouraging creative participation. Grandmother Fish, his first children's book, took 15 years to complete. It began when he couldn't find a book to help him teach his daughter about evolution, so he decided to write one himself.
Karen Lewis is a Seattle-based illustrator for children’s storybooks, history, and science. She strives to make her art accessible, accurate and visually delicious. She’s the resident cartoonist for Cobblestone, an American history magazine for kids. Her children’s books include Will it Blow – Become a Volcano Detective at Mount St. Helens, Amazing Alaska and Arturo and the Navidad Birds.