By Tracy Moore,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Hilarious tongue-in-cheek tale teaches acceptance.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Kids learn about different types of carnivorous animals and their reputations in the animal kingdom.
Carnivores presents a strongly positive message in favor of self-acceptance (and eating meat).
Positive Role Models
Characters are relatable to school-age children, with a good attitude to model -- they care about fitting in, but ultimately work toward self-acceptance.
Violence & Scariness
Many of these meat-eaters are shown with giant, toothy, open mouths, which could frighten smaller kids. Their affection for meat-eating (such as innocent bunnies and cute birds) is professed with relish (but never shown in action), which might be a bit explicit for very young kids who are likely attached to cute animals.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Carnivores is a humorous celebration of meat-eating that doubles as a lesson in self-acceptance. Because the animals' meat-eating is shown with such gusto, younger kids may need shielding from jokes about cute bunnies eyed as lunch. A minor note: Parents who are vegetarian or vegan may find the book's zeal for meat could confuse an at-home message about diet.
Where to Read
Based on 1 parent review
Confusing and Disturbing
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What's the Story?
When a group of carnivores are hurt by their reputations as savage meat eaters, they band together to try to fit in, attempting everything from disguises to abandoning meat eating altogether. Along the way, they have to figure out how to accept themselves, and how to live with being misunderstood.
Is It Any Good?
CARNIVORES is a tongue-in-cheek riot. Told from the perspective of animals who long for acceptance in spite of their bad raps, the book explores the hilarious lengths to which people (and animals) will go to fit in, rendered vibrantly with mixed-media illustrations that wouldn't be out of place in a graphic novel.
For kids, the bold, silly humor and social concerns of these bloodthirsty predators will be a hilarious read. For parents with school-age kids, the notion that there's just no use trying to be something you're not is a valuable lesson that can't be taught soon enough.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about meat eating vs. vegetarianism. What are some reasons for eating meat? What are some reasons against?
Many animals eat only meat, but some eat just plants. Humans can subsist on protein found in plant and animal sources. What kinds of protein do you eat in your family? What's your favorite?
What does it mean to fit in? Have you ever felt you should change something about yourself to fit in? What happened? How did it make you feel?
- Author: Aaron Reynolds
- Illustrator: Dan Santat
- Genre: Picture Book
- Topics: Ocean Creatures, Science and Nature, Wild Animals
- Book type: Fiction
- Publisher: Chronicle Books
- Publication date: August 20, 2013
- Publisher's recommended age(s): 4 - 8
- Number of pages: 40
- Available on: Nook, Hardback, Kindle
- Last updated: July 12, 2017
Did we miss something on diversity?
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Where to Read
Our Editors Recommend
Children's Books About Animals
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