Trademarked by the Smithsonian and largely about Clyde Roper a Smithsonian scientist, this book was engaging to me largely because when I was a kid in the 70s and 80s there was almost nothing available other than the drawings and odd picture of a fisherman-caught tentacle. It was great to see so many photos gathered all in one place, and to see the results of decades of research pay off in some excellent photos and information about live giant squid. Unlike some of the other books, this one focuses strongly on the squid itself at first, and then turns into the story of the scientists. As a science identity book it turns out great, but it would have been good in the title or somewhere else to help readers know up front how much they could learn about scientist identity by reading this book--Cerullo and Roper do a great job. In particular, the clear focus on how Kubodera picked up the line of research and ended up making the discoveries Roper would have wanted to make himself. A great picture of both teamwork in adding to the body of data, and also competition among scientists to make the find and answer the questions!
The pictures on pp 42-43 were riveting!
Sources could be better. I see a few books, and clear links to the organizations Roper has worked for. But what about direct links to some of the scientific writing? Reports, grant proposals, etc.? Again, a trail to primary research should be the standard in sourcing books like this today. Leading young people to write authentic genres depends on leading them to mentor texts. If we want kids to write like Egyptologists or oceanographers we have to show them the most common writing genres from these people. Let's move this direction!