Hi, folks! I’m excited to announce that my brand new children’s paleofiction storybook Pterosaur Trouble is hitting stores, with both Amazon.com and Amazon.ca now listing it as “in stock.” (The official release date is April 1st. Other vendors, including my own home-team headquarters on the web, the Skeptics Society’s Skeptic.com, will have it in stock in the coming weeks.)
Pterosaur Trouble is the followup to Ankylosaur Attack. It is book two of my Tales of Prehistoric Life series for Kids Can Press. A natural history-inspired fictional storybook for kids aged 4–7, Pterosaur Trouble is written by yours truly, illustrated by myself with Jim W.W. Smith, and edited by Valerie Wyatt (reuniting the team behind Evolution: How We and All Living Things Came to Be). It tells a story of a mighty pterosaur, Quetzalcoatlus, ambushed at a riverside by a pack of much smaller Saurornitholestes dinosaurs. This almost Lilliputian confrontation was inspired in part by (the most spectacular possible interpretation of) a real Canadian fossil find by Wendy Sloboda and staff at Alberta’s Royal Tyrrell Museum: bones of a huge azhdarchid pterosaur gnawed on by small theropods, one of which which left behind a tooth identified as Saurornitholestes langstoni. (See Philip J. Currie and Aase Roland Jacobsen’s paper “An azhdarchid pterosaur eaten by a velociraptorine theropod” for the story of this wonderfully evocative discovery—PDF.)
I’m very proud of the new book. Thanks to eye-watering detail work and ridiculously high-resolution textures—the equivalent of 67 megapixels!—Jim and I were able to achieve even crisper, more photorealistic depictions of our prehistoric creatures in this story. We also brought in paleozoologist Darren Naish (of Scientific American‘s Tetrapod Zoology fame) early in the process as an expert science consultant to help me keep this fictional tale even more carefully grounded in scientific fact.
If you get the chance to take a look at the new book, then I hope you (or your children) enjoy it!