What’s The Eight-Year-Old reading this week?

April10Our semi-weekly survey of the tidbits that cross The Eight-Year-Old’s desk.

A sampling of this week’s books:

Toby Alone by by Timothee de Fombelle (Author), Francois Place (Illustrator), Sarah Ardizzone (Translator)

From the description on Amazon: “A Lilliputian world. A tree under threat. A boy hunted by his own people must protect his father’s secrets in a gripping and witty eco-adventure.” From The Eight-Year-Old: “You have to read this, Mommyo. It’s awesome.”

Toby and the Secrets of the Tree by by Timothee de Fombelle (Author), Francois Place (Illustrator), Sarah Ardizzone (Translator)

Toby continues his struggle against the evil forces intent on destroying the tree in which he and his people live.

George’s Cosmic Treasure Hunt by Lucy Hawking and Stephen Hawking (Illustrated by Garry Parsons)

George and Annie explore the galaxy in the second installment of the George’s Secret Key series. Like the other books in the series, this book features easy-to-read essays by Stephen Hawking on the latest developments in cosmology and space travel.

In the news:

Brontosaurus deserves its name after all (Science News)
(Image: Davide Bonadonna, Milan, Italy via ScienceNews)
(Image: Davide Bonadonna, Milan, Italy via ScienceNews)

Old friend and loyal Caterpickles reader, Susan, alerted us to this week’s top story. After  being written off as just another Apatosaurus for more than a century, the Brontosaurus has finally been recognized as the unique genus (and species) every right-thinking lay dinosaur lover has known it to be. Turns out, the original Brontosaurus discovered in 1879 has a thinner, more delicate neck than the average Apatosaurus. According to the 2015 study, two other dinosaur species previously considered to be members of the Apatosaurus family are actually types of Brontosaurus as well.

Somewhere Othniel Charles Marsh, the paleontologist who first discovered Brontosaurus during the Bone Wars of the 19th century, is shaking a jubilant fist at his archrival Charles Drinker Cope and saying, “I told you it was a unique find! That brings my total to 81. What did you have again? 56?” [insert irritating little chuckle]. I suspect Elmer Riggs, the guy who reclassified Brontosaurus as an Apatosaurus in 1903, is reaping his share of O.C. Marsh scorn now as well.

So who does come out smelling like a rose in this debacle? The curators of the American Museum of Natural History in New York City, who through some combination of inertia, stubbornness, or deference to public opinion and tradition have steadfastly refused to update the label on their Brontosaurus specimen since 1903.

Child, 4, Finds 100 Million Year Old Dinosaur Bones in Mansfield (NBC News)

In a development certain to have children digging in retail construction sites nationwide, a four-year-old boy and his father have stumbled across a 100-million-year-old Nodosaur skeleton near a Mansfield retail center that was under construction.  The pair, who were out hunting for fish fossils, immediately turned over the specimen to researchers at SMU for analysis.

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