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Insect Adventures

Jean-Henri Fabre and Louise Hasbrouck Zimm

Book Overview: 

This book is composed of selections from Alexander Teixeira de Mattos’ Translation of Fabre’s “Souvenirs Entomologiques,” retold for children. It's made up of first-person narratives, and using his exceptional observation skills, gives us a close-up peep into the world of insects, including bees, wasps, worms, beetles, moths, and spiders, to name a few. When Fabre first published this work, as the Preface indicates, he was criticized by some scientists in his field for writing a scientific book that was "too interesting."

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .ody a pretty pink, takes care of the spoiled honey. This worm turns into a Beetle in a red dress with blue ornaments, whom you may often see strolling about the Bee’s house in the working season, tasting here and there drops of honey oozing from some cracked cell. The Bees leave him in peace, as if they knew that it was his duty to keep their house wholesome.

Still later, when the Bee’s house, exposed as it is to wind and weather, cracks and falls to pieces almost entirely, the Bees leave it for good and all, and still other insects take possession of it. These are gypsies, who are not particular where they camp out. Spiders make their homes in the blind alleys which used to be cells, and weave white-satin screens, behind which they lie in wait for passing game. The Hunting-wasps arrange nooks with earthen embankments or clay partitions, and there store up small members of the Spider tribe as food for their families. So we see that the house that. . . Read More