If there is anything you want to know about nature, DK’s Smithsonian Explanatorium of Nature ($38.99) may be the book you want.

This hardcover book is broken down into several sections: basics of life; microorganisms and fungi; plants; fish; birds; mammals; and habitats, among others. Within each section there are a number of different topics such as how camouflage works, with examples of some of the planet’s amazing camouflagers including the Orchid Mantis (I recently read about these creatures and even understanding how they work, I still can’t see it); how fishes swim; and how stingers work – interesting and painful to look at.

There is often close-up views of whatever the page is about from 40 times magnification of a Elodea leaf (how cells work), to a closeup look at the belly of a gecko (how geckos climb). The up-close look at a spider wasn’t necessary (I always seem to be drawn to those types of pictures. Yuck. However, the page about spider silk was interesting if you can get around the spider itself.)

The pictures are beautiful (or creepy, depending) and the information is easy to understand and offered in short bits with lots of illustrations.

All my favourite creatures are in here, including an adorable section on mammal babies including kittens and fox kits, various raptors (including an amazing photo of a bald eagle in hunting mode – Wow!) and deep-sea fishes. I find these guys fascinating. I could go without the invertebrates, particularly anything with multiple legs, but I also understand they are important to our world.

Smithsonian Explanatorium of Nature is one of those books where you will keep picking it up and learning more about this fascinating world we live in.

Read my review of DK’s Smithonian Explanatorium Science here.

A copy of this book was provided by DK for an honest review. The opinions are my own.