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Gone Wild: An Endangered Animal Alphabet

3.78  ·  Rating details ·  1,163 ratings  ·  214 reviews
Feast your eyes on these amazing creatures before they disappear. This stampede of wild animals, from Chinese Alligator to Grevy's Zebra, are so rare, they're all endangered. David McLiman's bold and playful illustrations transform each letter into a work of art, graphically rendered with animal characteristics. Scales, horns, even insect wings transform the alphabet into ...more
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published September 5th 2006 by Walker Childrens
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Average rating 3.78  · 
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 ·  1,163 ratings  ·  214 reviews

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I had to get this book ILL as our library no longer carries it. I don’t like the library not carrying the Caldecott books, but I understand somewhat why many people don’t read this one. It’s not an exciting book. This is an alphabet book about all the animals going extinct. It’s important to think about, but it’s also a downer and not fun to read before bed. Plus, David does a black and white drawing of the letter looking somewhat like the animal and there isn’t a good picture of what the real e ...more
Dave Schaafsma
A picture book which could be seen as a kiddie companion to Elizabeth Kohlbert's The Sixth Extinction or as an homage to Edmund Gorey's morbid alphabet books, such as The Gashlycrumb Tinies (with each letter representing an amusingly gruesome death). But it's not quite right for kiddies, though, as the black and white to-be-extinct animals, one per letter, cannot be appreciated as such except possibly by adults. As an adult, I liked the connections to Gorey and the Anthropcene. What brings my ra ...more
Robert Davis
This is an alphabet book using endangered species as the learning device. While there is much to appreciate and admire in the books construction and artwork, there are also some shortcomings and areas that could be improved upon to make it more child friendly. The end product feels more geared toward adults than to the young children first learning their ABC's. Not surprisingly, this is the authors' first "children's book" as it seems far too sophisticated for children. This clearly is a book me ...more
Beverly Kennett
Feb 01, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This alphabet book was awarded a Caldecott honor in 2007. It includes the black and white illustrations of endangered animals in the shape of the alphabet letter that the animal's name begins with. The author, David McLimans, uses black and white illustrations to highlight the letter forms within the animal representations. Each page includes an information box that lists 5 descriptive topics about the animal: scientific class, habitat, geographic range, threats, and current species endangered s ...more
Nov 14, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, picture
I quite liked the designs of the letters, but I'm not sure who the intended audience is for this book. It's not suitable for teaching a small child the alphabet, because the letters are confusingly distorted and embellished, and the rest of the text about the animals is pretty advanced. Maybe more for older kids who are interested in animals and, uh... calligraphy?

At the end there is a paragraph with information about each animal. I appreciated this, but wished they had been accompanied by phot
Sep 30, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed
Genre: Children’s Book, Alphabet, Informational, Science


Endangered animals are highlighted using each letter of the alphabet as it occurs in their name. Each letter is draw with an incorporation of the animal itself and a small box on each page provides relevant scientific information. A glossary at the end supplies additional information and a host of resources to further explore the animals individually and the issue of saving endangered species.

The illustrations are done in a highly
Nov 07, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: info-bios
This is an engaging alphabet book featuring endangered animals. The introduction of the book is a must-read! It defines how each animal is rated based on the threat level facing each species: critically endangered, endangered and vulnerable. This vocabulary is useful to readers of any age as they explore endangered animals. More specifically, each page gives bullet-like information about the animals’ class, habitat, range (where they live), threats and the status of their endangerment. This book ...more
Jim Erekson
Feb 14, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: picturebooks
This minimalist combination of alphabet book and informational book makes interesting use of metonym. The more I looked, the more I appreciated how McLimans used a representative part of the animal to connect to the alphabet letter (most of the time). The red ink illustrations of the whole animal help us notice how this works. The cleanness of each page, with its clear placement of the black illustration and the red vignette for information it is very easy to look at and pay attention to each el ...more
Mar 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
McLimans has taken the conventional alphabet book and spiced things up by replacing boring old "apple" with "Chinese Alligator." Each animal is then depicted as the letter they represent. This was the only issue I had with the book; a few of the animals, much like the alligator for the letter 'A', are so contorted as to be nearly unrecognizable. But there were only two or three of these where it felt like the author was really pushing it. He does, however, provide a small, stylized picture of th ...more
Oct 30, 2009 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: older kids (ages 8+) and adults
Shelves: lis-565
Gone Wild is a starkly simple alphabet book that introduces readers to some of the animals that endanger in extinction. "D" for Blue Duck a native of New Zealand that is endangered because of habitat loss. Each letter is drawn to represent the animal. The latin name, class, habitat, range, threats and status tell a little more about the animal. The illustrations of the letters are creative in how David McLimans chose to depict each animal but it lacks color with black and red being the only colo ...more
Alyssa Casillas
"Gone Wild:An Endangered Animal Alphabet" by David McLimans has won the Caldecott Honor in 2007. What I love about this book is that it speaks about the endangered animals through the alphabet. For example, the letter B is about the Madagascar Tree Boa. I really like how each letter is a picture of the endangered animal. The typography used in the picture book really is interesting an grabs the attention of readers. The illustrator could have easily just placed regular letters of the alphabet on ...more
Beka Powers
Feb 26, 2020 rated it liked it
Genre: Caldecott Honor Book
Awards: Caldecott Honor Book

Audience: Ages 3-5

Summary: Each page is filled with information about an endangered animal that starts with each the letter throughout the alphabet. The animal makes the shape of the animal.

a. This book is a Caldecott book because it has the Caldecott sticker and was on a list for it. It won this award through it’s unique artistic style to make an alphabet book about endangered animals.

b. The shape of the creative letters and animals in t
Sabrina Barrientos
Feb 26, 2020 rated it liked it
Awards: Caldecott Medal
Genre: Alphabet book
Audience:4-7 years
Summary: a fun interactive alphabet book that teaches not only about the alphabet but, endangered species and facts about them as well.
Specific Genre Prompts
-Each animal is paired with the same corresponding letter. For example C is for Chimpanzee. Not only does the child learn his/her alphabets but interesting facts about endangered species
-One thing that I found really neat is that the animal was shaped into its correspond
Teryca Brooks-Long
Feb 03, 2020 rated it liked it
Genre: Alphabet Picture Book
Awards: Caldecott Honor Award
Audience: Preschool-1st grade
This is an alphabet book, with illustrations of endangered exotic animals, and also has facts about the species. As well.
A. It is an alphabet book that matches the letters to the specific endangered animals with the same letter. They have an easier category of animal written next to technical term for beginning readers.
B. The shape of the animal was illustrated into the shape of the corresponding letter. It al
Annalise Nakoneczny
Nov 17, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2020
Very informative, with awesome papercut illustrations. It makes me a little sad to thing about how this list may have change since this was published.
Nicole Lamb
Sep 18, 2012 rated it liked it
Picture Book Critique #3

Gone Wild: An Endangered Animal Alphabet
By: David McLimans

1. Picture Book Genre: Alphabet

2. Brief Summary: As a Caldecott Honor Book Gone Wild: An Endangered Animal Alphabet by David McLimans uses intriguing black and white pictures of animal features made into the letters of the alphabet to highlight a variety of endangered species throughout the world. Each page features a different animal beginning with the appropriate letter of the alphabet in order and having a large
Tameika King
Oct 07, 2013 added it
Shelves: libs-642
A black and white alphabet book that allows children to learn not only the alphabet but different types of endangered species as well.

This book could also be used with elementary children during a unit on endangered species. It features not only the names of the endangered species but their class, habitat, range, threats, and status as well. It could be used to assist younger children with letter recognition of both capital and lower case letters.

I loved this book. I thought it was an interestin
Emily McCracken
Feb 04, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: a-b-c
Gone Wild: An Endangered Animal Alphabet by David McMilimans was an OK book. McMiliman used animals to shape the different letters which would be great to help children associate letters with words that they see regularly, such as animals. The thought was there and it was creative BUT the animals chosen for the letters were too advanced for elementary aged kids (I did not know what some of the animals were). Some of the animals used would also confuse children. He used Madagascar Tree Boa for th ...more
Originally I thought this book would be an interesting take on an alphabet book, esp one that has one a Caldecott Honor. I thought it was supposed to be meant as an alphabet book for younger kids, but with the amount of writing and kind of writing (i.e. English name & scientific Latin name for the birds, insects and animals in the book), I would say it could easily be just an informational book for up to grade 7. I found the information on the endangered animals very interesting, though I don't ...more
Interesting. Not your typical children's book.

It's an alphabet book. Each letter of the alphabet is in the shape of an animal that is endangered. The text consists of only a description of each animal, the region the animal lives, its endangered status, and the technical and common names. All in black and white.
Lynn Plourde
May 19, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picturebook
This Caldecott Honor book features an alphabet of endangered animals using clever black-and-white illustrations that turn each letter into the target animal. Additional information about each animal's habitat, threats, etc. are included in the back of the book. ...more
Shaye Miller
Oct 20, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: caldecott
Beautifully drawn letters match a different endangered animal/creature throughout the alphabet. However, the best part of this book is found at the end where every animal/creature is briefly discussed, including where it can be found and what has led to its endangerment.
Seema Rao
Jan 12, 2018 rated it liked it
The alphabet is told through Adrinka-style symbolic renditions of each letter and interesting and unexpected animals.
Sep 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Young children, especially animal lovers.
Shelves: picture-books
It's a neat and (sadly) needed take on alphabet books bring a gentle awareness to the fragility of life and our ecosystems. ...more
Maria Rowe
• 2007 Caldecott Honor Book •

This is a beautiful, unique book! However, I think adults would appreciate this a lot more than children. Each page lists a letter, an animal in the shape of the letter, and lists the class, habitat, range, threats and status. Sometimes the letter just really doesn't look anything like the animal, and the image feels really forced. Also, I had some minor frustrations with the typography: the name of the animal should have been larger because it gets really lost, and
Nov 12, 2018 rated it it was ok
This nonfiction text gives an endangered animal for every letter of the alphabet. Each page includes the animals latin name, its class, the range of where you can find it, the habitat it lives in, the status of the animals endangerment, and the threats it faces.

This book is filled with latin phrases and other big words than could be confusing to the reader. The book would have been better if the author would have added real images of each animal for each letter. Although it'
Sep 18, 2017 rated it did not like it
13. Summary: McLimans, uses the alphabet as a way to learn about endangered species. Each letter is designed to represent an endangered animal. Each page provides a short description of the class, habitat, range, threats and statues of the animal. At the end of the book it provides a more detailed descpription of the animal and resources the reader can use to find more information.

Evaluation: The design of the letters are very creative, but I do not think it is very helpful for a child learning
Rana ♡
Sep 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
GONE WILD is an interesting picture book written and illustrated by David McLimans. The book’s pages resemble what readers may see within an encyclopedia; pictures of endangered species, reasons why they are threatened, their habitat, range, endangered status, as well as their scientific names. This book would be a great resource to use when introducing the topic of endangered animals to students in a science lesson. But because of the context of the material it would definitely be something tha ...more
Ryan Reitz
Jul 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
McLimans, D. (2006). Gone Wild: An Endangered Animal Alphabet. New York: Walker & Company.

Category: Science informational.

McLimans does an excellent job of integrating multiple subjects in this book. This book combines reading, the alphabet and animal facts in one engaging picture book. Twenty six different endangered animals are listed for each of the alphabet letters. For example, “A” stands for the Chinese Alligator and each page provides details on their habitats, threats and endangered stat
Feb 10, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: caldecott
2007 Caldecott Honor - Favorite Illustration: M-Prairie Sphinx Moth. The way the author used each letter to represent each animal is pretty imaginative.
This was an interesting collection of endangered animals. I appreciated the author's note explaining the different tiers of endangerment, as well as his method for choosing animals to include in his book. I also enjoyed the end-notes on the different animals, although I find myself wishing that the notes had been included on each individual page,
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