Monday, 27 January 2014

Joanna's Choice: ANTics

I had read the e-book, ANTics, by Dakota Douglas and was ready to write my review when Sadie and Holly got sick. They are rarely under the weather and the heavy colds made them miserable. They were only sick for a couple of days each but we were three days suffering as Sadie was bogged down in the sniffles a day before Holly. The misery was further compounded by receiving crayons after asking their dad to bring home markers for them, they were not happy!

The girls love being read to and I read Dakota Douglas's story of the ants that live in InhabitANT. I expected Sadie (age 4) and Holly (age 3) to find it too long and intricate but it turned out to be pure enjoyment to two children who only wanted to be wrapped in blankets and listen. It is aimed at children of 7+ years and I can see how children of that age and older would enjoy it, I thoroughly did. Ironically, we recently had lengthy discussions about ants because we came across this little ant city between two pieces of slate at my parents' house:

The hero of ANTics is called HesitANT who, as heroes tend to, starts off meek but ends up becoming fearless and saves the day. He and his ant friends meet other creatures like worms, butterflies and the dreaded, smelly spider, Puggy, on their epic adventure. ANTics reveals very interesting facts about ants. We were fascinated by all of them but particularly by ants having a colony scent that they could lose if they stayed away from their nest for too long and also that they have two stomachs. The facts were worked into the story so well that I had to look a few of them up so confirm they were true.

While the story is fast-paced there aren't any details left out, the reader gets a full description of the relevant surroundings or vegetation. The author lets us see the action from the viewpoint of the tiny ants and then from where the human is standing.

Once you've read this tale you'll never look at ants the same way again. I can see myself peering at them to see if I can identify things like tapping each other with their antennae in order to get a message across.

I was given a copy of ANTics to review. My opinions are my own. If you wish to purchase it you can do so at Amazon or Smashwords. I  recommend it!

Left: Puggy the spider in his web and the ants below /
Right: The whole colony of ants and PleasANT the worm
It's hard to see (we'll blame the cheap crayons!) but Sadie drew a few pictures after hearing about the antics in ANTics. It made a good impression here.


  1. That sounds brilliant, I love a good story buried in fact! And the pictures are great: I love reading to my children and seeing what they create as a result of the story. Great review :)

    1. Thanks Emily, we really learned a lot about ants! I was delighted to see Sadie's drawings because they showed she understood the story and it meant she was getting better!