4-7 books, 7-11 books, Brilliant Books, Young Adult books

WEEKLY ‘WHAT’S ON THE SHELF?’: THE STORY OF LIFE EVOLUTION Illustrated by Katie Scott and Written by Fiona Munro and Ruth Symons

‘Welcome to The Story of Life….’


This quite possibly has to be one of the most beautiful books on ourĀ  book shelf. Part of the ‘Welcome to the Museum’ series by Big Pictures Press. Big Picture Press books describe themselves as ‘objects to be pored over and then returned to, again and again…created and made for the incurably curious’. My daughter is certainly one of those people! Full of questions about life on Earth and with an already encyclopedic knowledge of animals and creatures, she asked Father Christmas for this book and he delivered!

‘The Story of Life Evolution is a non-fiction book which tells the story of life. Spanning algae to Archaeopteryx, the first mammals to the first men. We have both enjoyed sharing the book together, reading it chronologically, sharing known facts and discovering new ones. The book itself reminded us both of a wall panel at The Eden Project which we were lucky enough to have visited last summer. This told us the story of evolution from the very beginning of time, not just from ‘The Dinosaurs’ which can be a common misconception of children of all ages. Dinosaur fans however, will not be disppointed as they take their place in the book in vivid detail. The Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods are all represented plus a double page spread on the terrifying Tyrannosaurus Rex!

I love that the book is presented as being ‘Curated by Katie Scott’ (the illustrator), and the first chapter is entitled ‘Entrance’, giving the reader the feel of entering a real life museum. Each ‘life phase’ then becomes a new ‘gallery’, an inventive and inspired theme which draws the reader further into the ‘museum’.

The illustrations by the amazingly talented Katie Scott are simply stunning, full of minute detail to be studied time and time again and give a real feel of museum artefacts waiting to be explored. Each page of illustrations also comes with a simple key, a great opportunity for children to read and explore different text types.

This truely is a book for ALL ages. My two year old son enjoys the illustrations of the plants, butterflies and dinosaurs as much as my eldest. The facts and descriptions are complex enough for adults yet also understandable for youngsters. New observations can be made with return readings, this certainly is a book for life!