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Slapstick science, anyone? It’s a wrap!

Director Steven Spielbug’s attempt to film a nature documentary goes badly awry.

Not even unflappable, six-limbed commentator David Antenborough can rescue the ground-level shoot as a fly nearly interrupts Spielbug’s shot of the orb-weaver spider, the slug goes off script, the grasshopper huffily objects to being billed as “Nature’s great show-off,” the earthworm misses a cue, the robin calls in sick, and then, to top it all off, a looming canine nose (with dog attached) “wuffl[es]” into view—sending the entire invertebrate cast and crew into panicked flight. But if, among all the chaos, observations about not only webs, legs, diets, and relatives of the bugs, spiders, and other wildlife typically seen in low, grassy habitats (“When this spider is ready to make a new web, it will eat this one and reuse the silk proteins”), but dogs, too, get delivered (with further detail provided in the closing credits), who’s to complain? And if Tavis equips his multispecies cartoon figures with bits of clothing and anthropomorphic features, the setting and its residents are still close enough to natural to be recognizable. (This book was reviewed digitally.) Slapstick science, anyone? It’s a wrap! (Informational picture book. 6-8)

—Kirkus Reviews

Pub Date: March 14, 2023

ISBN: 9780884484639

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Tilbury House

Review Posted Online: Nov. 29, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 2022

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