Ancient Animals: Saber-toothed Cat book cover image

Ancient Animals: Saber-toothed Cat

  • 1295

By: Sarah L. Thomson / Illustrated by: Andrew Plant

Young readers will really sink their teeth into this amazing nonfiction.

Kids are fascinated by ancient animals. It’s hard to beat the dinosaurs, but if anything can, it’s the saber-toothed cat. This cat, with knife-like fangs, was large enough and strong enough to take down a bison--can you imagine? A kid can. In this introduction to this fearsome cat, clear and concise sentences are designed for emergent readers—full of interesting facts and expanding vocabularies.

Zoologist Andrew Plant’s illustrations are scientifically accurate and full of drama. Young readers will be thrilled by situations that scientists believe were the way of life for this animal that lived sixteen thousand years ago.

Parents and teachers looking for books to fit the Common Core State Standards for Reading Literature and Reading Informational Texts in grades 1–4, look no further! Ancient Animals: Saber-toothed Cat will engage young readers with the amazing life story of an ancient animal, how it lived and hunted, and how it became extinct.

Look Inside the Book:

Author & Illustrator Bios:

Sarah L. Thomson, author

Sarah L. Thomson is a former children's book editor who is now a full-time children's book writer. She has written more than thirty books across many genres. Sarah lives in Portland, Maine.

Read more about Sarah.

Andrew Plant, illustrator

Andrew Plant is a trained zoologist who has illustrated more than 40 books for kids, including Where's My Shell? (Cambridge University Press) and Could a Tyrannosaurus Play Table Tennis? (Penguin Australia). Andrew lives in Melbourne, Australia.

Read more about Andrew.

Editorial Reviews:

Kirkus Reviews

The Ancient Animals series continues with a look at what's known about the saber-toothed cats that lived thousands of years ago. An imagined hunting scene kicks off this introduction to saber-toothed cats, a well-camouflaged Smilodon fatalis hiding under a bush while a bear, a lion and two wolves pass by (all in the same illustration). A bison is the cat's prey. Using its strong legs and sharp claws, the cat drags down the bison, killing it with either a bite to the throat or a slash to the bison's stomach or side. Thomson goes on to explain how we know so much about these ancient cats: Bones found in asphalt tell us about its size, and from that, scientists can determine what it ate, how it caught its prey and a bit about its social groups. Scientists think that these cats became extinct because of competition for prey: Early humans hunted the same animals, and there was less prey to go around because a warming climate meant less grass for them to eat. Plant's acrylic gouache illustrations are quite realistic, and each animal is helpfully labeled with its scientific name. Backmatter includes a list of other "large-toothed hunter[s]" and resources for finding out more. A good introduction to both saber-toothed cats and paleontology.


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ISBN: 978-1-58089-400-5

ISBN: 978-1-58089-407-4

ISBN: 978-1-60734-739-2 EPUB
ISBN: 978-1-60734-630-2 PDF
For information about purchasing E-books, click here.

Ages: 6-9
Page count: 32
6 x 8 1/4

Correlated to Common Core State Standards:
English Language Arts-Literacy. Reading Informational. Grade 1. Standards 1-8 and 10.
English Language Arts-Literacy. Reading Informational. Grade 2. Standards 1, 3-8, and 10.

If you like this book, you’ll enjoy these:
Ancient Animals: Terror Bird
Secret Sabertooth
After the Kill