This week’s Long Read of the Week is The Beetle Collector’s Handbook, by M.G. Leonard, published by Scholastic.
Hot on the success of MG Leonard’s popular Beetle Boy series comes this invaluable collection for beetle fans everywhere (unfortunately not me! Nothing against them, I’m just squeamish with insects).
What it’s about
In the Beetle Boy trilogy, Darkus Cuttle and his friends learn everything they need to know about beetles from The Beetle Collector’s Handbook, which was passed down by Darkus’s father. Now fans of the series can get their own copy of this fascinating read and learn about entomology from the same book as Darkus and his friends.
The cover of this book alone conveys authority but in a way that’s attractive to children and adults. The stunning red hardback and the gold lettering and design make this a joy to behold so that, even a terrified person like me, wants to open it and see what’s inside.
Some of the illustrations are a little too ‘leggy’ for my liking …
but then some of the beetles look quite cute and colourful:
What I enjoyed was the mixture of the informative and the informal – Leonard conveys information in a way that’s so interesting that I found myself intrigued by these amazing insects. However, I will still get jumpy when the May/June Bugs (Cockchafers) emerge around our holly tree and fall down our chimney, crashing, bashing and thrashing against the steel. Then, I will probably run out of the room. But at a safe distance, there’s a lot to be learned from this gem of a book.