Written by Jonathan London
Illustrated by Meilo So
This new book is a well-researched tale about a litter of river otter pups as they grow and learn in their first year of life. It begins in early spring in the abandoned den of a beaver. After five weeks, the pups’ eyes open and the play begins. Their wrestling, chasing, and tug-of-war help the pups develop the speed and agility they need for hunting. The mother teaches them to swim so they can catch fish and eat other water-based delicacies. As they become more aware of their surroundings, they guard their territory. Throughout the winter, they continue to hunt and keep each other warm in the den. Then they play some more.
Extensive sidebars appear on every two-page spread so third graders can learn more about this lovable animal. Illustrations capture the playful nature and tenacity of the otters. As otters are part of the weasel family, this book would be valuable in the study of woodland creatures and in developing literacy skills.