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Children's Nonfiction Zoology

Wanted! Criminals of the Animal Kingdom

by (author) Heather Tekavec

illustrated by Susan Batori

Kids Can Press
Initial publish date
Mar 2020
Zoology, General, General
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Mar 2020
    List Price

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Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 6 to 9
  • Grade: 1 to 4
  • Reading age: 6 to 9


Think animals are all well-behaved? Think again. These thirteen play dirty. But they're about to get caught!

A fish who deceives her prey with a light dangling in front of her mouth? A bird who leaves her eggs in another bird's nest to be raised? A monkey who shouts “Danger” to scare away the others from the fruit? Meet some of the animal kingdom's most wanted criminals! Slippery Slick, Queenie the Meanie, Lil' Cupid --- they're all here in this hilarious book of animal case files that include rap sheets, mug shots, reports of criminal activity and more. All thirteen animals stand accused of playing dirty, but now that Detective X is hot on their trail, their criminal days may soon be behind them!

Author Heather Tekavec offers an original approach to investigating animal behavior, with a fun storyline built on hardcore facts. Paired with Susan Batori's cheeky illustrations, this is a laugh-out-loud read that explores fascinating animal science. Each animal “criminal” gets a spread that's filled with facts about the animal's characteristics, including distinguishing features, diet, life span, habitat and more, as well as a description of the animal's “bad” behavior and the reason behind it. This book offers direct STEAM links to life science curriculum, particularly lessons on the characteristics of living things. The underlying premise of the book also offers the opportunity for discussions on what it means to play fair in the world.

About the authors


Heather Tekavec est tombée amoureuse de la littérature jeunesse alors qu'elle travaillait comme enseignante au préscolaire. Elle a publié neuf livres pour enfants. Heather vit à Cloverdale, en Colombie-Britannique.


Heather Tekavec first fell in love with children's literature while working as a preschool teacher. She has published nine books for children. Heather lives in Cloverdale, British Columbia.

Heather Tekavec's profile page

Susan Batori is a Hungarian illustrator, graphic designer and character design addict. Watch out --- no one, not even her boyfriend or cat, is safe from becoming a funny character in an illustration. If you aren't careful, she just might use you as inspiration ...

Susan Batori's profile page

Editorial Reviews

In addition to their previous felonies, the animal criminals may end up stealing readers' hearts!

Booklist Online

The book is definitely a fun read, one that is filled with engaging information.

CM Magazine

A pleaser for younger naturalists.

Kirkus Reviews

Other titles by Heather Tekavec

Other titles by Susan Batori