The capybaras must have gotten a new agent. There were three books on them by different publishers in just the past year. This same publisher put one out in 2010 ([b:Capybara: The World's Largest Rodent|8164926|Capybara The World's Largest Rodent|Natalie Lunis|https://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/books/1348665574s/8164926.jpg|13010429]). It makes me wonder if there isn't a really strong set of stock photos available for this category that wasn't available before?
As the largest rodent, and one of the unique animals of South America, it deserves a place among the perennial topic books. Searching the title word in amazon.com or goodreads.com it looks like there's a new book by someone every five years or so. While this doesn't give it the publishing power of a topic like dinosaurs or the Titanic, it is a strange and interesting topic for the informational series to come back to. You never see an out and out picture book on this topic with a separate illustrator or photographer. Molly Bang, where are ye?
So the wide range of stock photos was really impressive. The designers had a lot to work with and put together a full set of standard descriptive categories for an animal, and Rachel Lyynette consulted with a PhD at New Mexico State on the science content. The spare writing doesn't leave room for any art beyond conciseness. A lot of basic answers to what and where questions, but not much for anyone with how and why questions. And there are some pretty good ones: Why is this rodent so huge when others are so small? Why did this one giant survive past ages when so many others went extinct? If its habitat extends into Panama, why isn't it in Central America or North America?