A deep dark cave that looks like a crocodiles mouth catches the curiosity of the troop of investigative monkeys. They also discover symbols carved on the rocks and seek to find answers.
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Grade 3-5 The implausible opening scenarios in these titles describe how monkeys a howler, a bushbaby, a gibbon, a chimp, a macaque, a ringtail monkey, a slow loris, and a chacma were crated together on a ship, lost at sea, and then washed up on an island. After that, each story stands alone. In Crocodile Teeth, the animals decode symbols and follow a trail of signs that Bushbaby saw in a dream. In Mystery of Nine, the characters learn to count so that they can divide their food equitably. Storm at Sea briefly retells the story of Robinson Crusoe. Through illustrations of the environment and descriptions of monkey characteristics and behaviors, some semblance of reality is created and some information is imparted. Most of the comic-book-style illustrations depict two monkeys talking to one another. Additional text beyond the dialogue bubbles is heaped onto the pages in asides that explain the action. The stories are long-winded, with writing that falls short and math concepts that are not developed. Erlene Bishop Killeen, Stroughton Area School District, WI
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