Cover Image: Not A Monster

Not A Monster

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Member Reviews

My son loved this story and insisted we read it every night for a month and I then ordered a phycial copy that we have been loving since release.
Would highly reccomend
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Axolotl is not a monster. It has weird form, for sure, but not a monster. This book tells a brief story of an axolotl, from egg to its normal form, mating and has eggs of its own. In a fantastic world of children's view, this book is fascinating, and we also learn some spanish words. Interesting!
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Did you know in the native language of the region Axolotl means water monster? But it’s not a monster, an axolotl is a type of salamander that never loses its gills and fins. This book is both a story and a nonfiction book about axolotls,  why they are endangered, and how we can help them. It’s lovingly done and beautifully illustrated. Lots of kids will like learning about an animal not habitually seen outside of aquariums in the US.
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I’ve read several new books of late which are about axolotls, but which never really mention that the axolotl is from, and ONLY from, Mexico! But this book takes great pleasure in interweaving Spanish language and local vistas.

The book follows the life cycle of an axolotl, from its egg hatching all the way up until its children’s eggs hatch. On the way, we focus on different colors, given in Spanish, along with a few other keywords, like “lago,” “abuelos,” and “amigos.”

The illustrations are pretty much full-page. There’s very little whitespace, and what there is is usually meant to denote sky and also serve as a simple backdrop for the text.

A great book to learn about an interesting animal and the importance of conservation and renaturing.

Advanced reader copy provided by the publisher.
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The tale of the axolotl is told lovingly in this beautifully illustrated picture book. Go on a journey to learn about this creature - very much not a monster. You'll read about its life cycle, its habitat, and its rumored origins. Spanish vocabulary, including highlighted colors, can be found on every page. Find a Spanish/English vocabulary list and informative author's note in the book's back matter. 

The illustrations will delight young readers who can find new and different things to learn with each reading. I highly recommend this title.

For librarians, depending on your collection, this book can be classified as nonfiction or picture book.
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Thanks to Netgalley and Charlesbridge for the ARC of this! 

Axolotls are ridiculously cute, in my opinion, and my kids were very excited to read a book about them. I like that it included Spanish words and a guide at the back, but as always, I wish pronunciations were also immediately after a word in parenthesis. I don’t usually flip back and forth to the end to be sure I’m saying it right and I only have HS French to try to use to puzzle out the other Romance language sounds 😂 I bet it’s awful. Overall very cute and interesting!
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I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are my own.

I just discovered axolotl existed a year of so ago and have become fond of these adorable salamanders

I enjoyed the various teaching aa opportunities included in this story. Language, biology, pollution and it's effect on or planer and folklore.

Great Great book
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Not a Monster is an engaging nonfiction picture book that interweaves facts with the traditional Mexican folklore associated with the axolotl. Facts about the axolotl are presented with soft, muted illustrations and use of Spanish terms. In addition to information about the axolotl’s life cycle, the book includes information about how their habitat is being impacted by humans. A glossary in the back provides translations for the Spanish words. With its beautiful illustrations and information-laden text, Not a Monster will engage early readers in learning about an animal that they may not be familiar with and in building an understanding of the larger world around them.
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Thank you to the author, Charlesbridge and NetGalley, for an ARC in exchange for an honest review. 

This is a lovely children's book that gives us a combination of science/biology and cultural history about the axolotl, as well as present-day environmental effects. I still don't know exactly how axolotl is pronounced, but we had a lot of fun reading this, learning a bit of Spanish vocabulary and looking at the gorgeous illustrations. At the back of the book, there is more information included about the animals and the rehabilitation of their environment, as well as glossaries which provide translations for the Spanish words in the book. Highly recommend!
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This book is just wonderful! The pictures and content are great by themselves, but adding the Spanish to a story set in Mexico just really pushes it over the top. I've already recommended this title, and I'm sure I will again!
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Absolutely brilliant book. The inclusion of Spanish language among English wording allows for readers to experience both languages as they read. With beautiful illustrations, the story of the “monster,” who is not actually a monster, comes alive. It’s a beautiful tail of misunderstanding and how we can help this creature survive long into the future. At the back, there is a glossary that helps readers understand what they are reading about, giving readers equal access to reading. Absolutely loved this beautiful book.
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This was a really cute book! I wasn't expecting spanish sentences in the book which was a little confusing at first, but the kids I read this seemed to like it. I wish some of the translations could have been on the same pages instead of at the end of the book, but otherwise it was a cute story with cute graphics! Kids gave it 2-thumbs up!
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This was so cute. A story that is a mix of science and history about the axolotl, as well as environmental/human affects on the animal. Mixed in with the story is Spanish vocabulary about the animal, as well colors. I loved the watercolor style illustrations and that the vocab was highlighted- each color was in that color font. I loved the inclusion of a vocabulary list at the back. This would be great for a science lesson or art project with kids, I would love to practice painting axolotls with kids after reading this. So cute!
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I accessed a digital review copy of this book from the publisher.
This book is about the axolotl. It tells about the life and home of the axolotl. It also includes and uses some Spanish vocabulary words.
I loved the art and story of this book. It teaches the reader all about the creature.
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Sweet drawings. I liked how the Spanish vocabulary words were brought in, both for colors and other nouns. I also liked learning about the legend of the axolotl.
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This picture book has a lot of great instructional connections: colors in Spanish, basic Spanish vocabulary, and the life cycle of an Axolotl. This would be a great lesson starter for Spanish, Science, and Language Arts classes. 

The illustrations are beautifully done, and I liked how the Spanish colors showed up in colored text to aid in comprehension. However, there were several Spanish words that were dropped into the text (patas, ciudad, raya, luna, etc.) with a translation guide only at the end of the book. This would be no big deal for a Spanish teacher using this story, but it may present a challenge for an average reader. 

Overall, this was a very informational story written in a poetic way. The Author's Note gave lots of great information, and now I'm inspired to buy an axolotl!
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This is an utterly adorable picture book aimed at kids, full of lovely watercolour illustrations of the life cycle of an Axolotl.

I liked how it flowed between the factual life cycle, into folklore, and touched on environmental issues impacting their natural habitats. 

The only even slight negative I could say it that, in ebook format, the glossary is inaccessible whilst reading. I have almost zero Spanish and a couple of the words weren't easy to guess (the colours being in their colour was a nice touch though!). If you had the physical book, or a smattering of Spanish, this wouldn't be an issue though. 

I received an advance copy for free from NetGalley, on the expectation that I would provide an honest review.
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Here is a beautifully written and beautifully illustrated book explaining the life cycle of an axolotl.
What especially makes this book stand out is the mixture of the Spanish and English vocabulary.  The Spanish/English dictionary, with its color additions at the book's conclusion is especially informative.  So is the Author's Note which give detailed information.
Not only is the text so timely regarding the environment and its impact on the axolotl's  surroundings but it ends with a means of improving the quality of their natural habitat.  This is a clever read which answers so many questions about axolotls in a meaningful manner.
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This is the story of axolotl the salamander that never loses their fins or gils. It follows the axolotl from hatching to growing to mating to laying its eggs. The mix of Spanish in the book is interesting but it does detract from the to book a bit when you don't know how to pronounce the words properly and there is nothing on the page telling you how they should be said.
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The lurking face of this gentle axolotl was what attracted me to the book as well as the fact that someone would suggest calling this charming salamander a monster.

 The book starts off by exploring a small axolotl as he hatches (guessing a gender from the model in the back of the book but I could be wrong) then follows him as he develops into what can only be described as a adult formed juvenile. The reader follows his adventures as he zips around the other watery denizens while the text weaves around the reader with some inclusion of Spanish words and colors to possibly encourage readers to step outside their comfort zones just a bit.

 <i>Not A Monster</i> then provides a brief summary on how the Aztecs considered this unique salamander to have originated before exploring some friends as they along with their community work on rehabilitating the axolotl's home. And then the heartwarming message that wraps all of this together.

 The illustrations were quite gorgeous, full page and full of wonderful details including the inclusion of native elements to showcase the changing of the story's plot. Furthermore there is included in the back of the book more information about the animals, their usage in the human world and the rehabilitation of their environment alongside the actual models of the axolotl characters in this book. At the same time there are two glossaries providing translations for the Spanish words and a separate glossary that translates the Spanish colors.

 It was cute, informative and a sweet story of hope that I would most definitely recommend to axolotl fans no matter their age. Even with the inclusion of Spanish words, it is still an easy enough read that one shouldn't be discouraged at this mix of storytelling.

  **I received a free copy of this book through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.**
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