Joan Procter, Dragon Doctor
For fans of Ada Twist: Scientist comes a fascinating picture book biography of a pioneering female scientist--who loved reptiles!Back in the days of long skirts and afternoon teas, young Joan Procter entertained the most unusual party guests: slithery and scaly ones, who turned over teacups and crawled past the crumpets.... While other girls played with dolls, Joan preferred the company of reptiles. She carried her favorite lizard with her everywhere--she even brought a crocodile to school!When Joan grew older, she became the Curator of Reptiles at the British Museum. She went on to design the Reptile House at the London Zoo, including a home for the rumored-to-be-vicious komodo dragons. There, just like when she was a little girl, Joan hosted children's tea parties--with her komodo dragon as the guest of honor.With a lively text and vibrant illustrations, scientist and writer Patricia Valdez and illustrator Felicita Sala bring to life Joan Procter's inspiring story of passion and determination.

Joan Procter, Dragon Doctor Details

TitleJoan Procter, Dragon Doctor
Author
ReleaseMar 13th, 2018
PublisherAlfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers
ISBN-139780399557262
Rating
GenreChildrens, Picture Books, Biography, Nonfiction, Animals, Science

Joan Procter, Dragon Doctor Review

  • Sarah Lynne
    January 1, 1970
    JOAN PROCTER, DRAGON DOCTOR (written by Patricia Valdez, illustrated by Felicita Sala, published by Alfred A. Knopf). When I saw the cover and title for this book, I thought I would like it, but it was when I saw the endpapers that I KNEW I would love it. With “dragon” in the title, I hadn’t initially realized that this was a biography of a “trailblazing woman of science, who was an international sensation in her time and whose legacy paved the way for female zoologist around the world”. However JOAN PROCTER, DRAGON DOCTOR (written by Patricia Valdez, illustrated by Felicita Sala, published by Alfred A. Knopf). When I saw the cover and title for this book, I thought I would like it, but it was when I saw the endpapers that I KNEW I would love it. With “dragon” in the title, I hadn’t initially realized that this was a biography of a “trailblazing woman of science, who was an international sensation in her time and whose legacy paved the way for female zoologist around the world”. However, after being hooked by the title and the engaging cover art (as well as the beautiful endpapers) I was quickly swept away by this fascinating story. The gorgeous illustrations give a wonderful sense of the era, and are full of lovely textures - from the scales of the reptiles to the vegetation of the exhibits, not to mention the softly cross-hatched backgrounds. I loved discovering Joan’s scientific pursuits throughout the story, and I wish I could have learned more about her work as an artist, hinted at here:“As a scientist, she surveyed the museum’s vast collections and published research papers on pit vipers and pancake tortoises. As an artist, she created exquisite models and drawings for the reptile exhibits. It sounds like she was a dedicated scientist who carefully cared for these fascinating, often reviled creatures; constantly working to help people see the beauty of the animals she loved. As a little girl who dreamed of being a zoologist I would have loved this book, and I am sure that many children, caregivers, librarians, teachers will love it too!
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  • Melissa Stoller
    January 1, 1970
    This inspiring story about a woman scientist hits just the right notes. From the first page, where the author writes, "while other girls read stories about dragons and princesses, Joan read books about lizards and crocodiles," the reader wants to find out what happens next. And the book comes full circle with the type of dragon Joan eventually loves. The illustrations perfectly complement the story. This book is a winner and will be a wonderful addition to a home or school library.
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  • Laura Harrison
    January 1, 1970
    One of the best picture book biographies I have ever read. A compelling subject, entertaining and extremely well researched and written. The illustrations are magnificent. There is even an actual photo of Joan with her pet alligator included. Phenomenal!
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  • KC
    January 1, 1970
    As a child, Londoner Joan Proctor didn't love parties and dances, she loved lizards and snakes. A stunning biography on a remarkable woman who rocked the science world and sadly died entirely too soon.
  • Alexandra Calaway
    January 1, 1970
    A hero for any nerdy girl, so a hero for me.
  • Baby Bookworm
    January 1, 1970
    This review was originally written for The Baby Bookworm. Visit us for new picture books reviews daily!Hello, friends! Our book today is Joan Procter, Dragon Doctor: The Woman Who Loved Reptiles, written by Patricia Valdez and illustrated by Felicita Sala, the story of the notable herpetologist and researcher.From childhood, Joan loved nothing more than spending time with her reptiles. Snakes, turtles, lizards, and the baby crocodile she was given for her birthday; Joan loved the quiet, intellig This review was originally written for The Baby Bookworm. Visit us for new picture books reviews daily!Hello, friends! Our book today is Joan Procter, Dragon Doctor: The Woman Who Loved Reptiles, written by Patricia Valdez and illustrated by Felicita Sala, the story of the notable herpetologist and researcher.From childhood, Joan loved nothing more than spending time with her reptiles. Snakes, turtles, lizards, and the baby crocodile she was given for her birthday; Joan loved the quiet, intelligent animals all. She would often spend her days in discussion with the curator of reptiles at the London Natural History Museum, who took Joan under his wing as a protege. When war came to England, Joan was offered a vacant position at the museum as the curator’s assistant; by the time the war had ended, she had been promoted to Reptile Curator. When the London Zoo decided to rebuild its reptile house, they consulted Joan, who designed a paradise for her scaly friends, including two Komodo Dragons that she formed a special bond with. Joan’s love of reptiles encouraged others to do the same, including passing on that love to the next generation of young zoologists.Very interesting! I had never heard of Joan, but was immediately taken by her story. Obviously, a young girl having a passion for herpetology was considered highly unusual in early 20th century England, and while this is mentioned a few times, the story focuses less on her gender and more on her tireless work (I was surprised to learn in the appendix that she died so young, considering her wealth of contributions to the field). The art is really lovely, putting special focus on the reptiles, inviting the reader to see them through Joan’s eyes. The length is very manageable for a biography, and JJ loved all the animals. A wonderful story about a remarkable woman, and it’s Baby Bookworm approved!Be sure to check out The Baby Bookworm for more reviews!
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  • Barbara
    January 1, 1970
    Although I'm no fan of zoos--yes, I know they serve a purpose, but I always feel sad at the thought of various species in captivity and I know that some zoos have not been the best places for many animals--I was excited to read this brief picture book biography about a woman who defied the gender norms of her time. not only did Joan Procter prefer lizards and snakes to dolls, but she brokered her hobby and keen interest in reptiles into a job at the Natural History Museum where she was befriende Although I'm no fan of zoos--yes, I know they serve a purpose, but I always feel sad at the thought of various species in captivity and I know that some zoos have not been the best places for many animals--I was excited to read this brief picture book biography about a woman who defied the gender norms of her time. not only did Joan Procter prefer lizards and snakes to dolls, but she brokered her hobby and keen interest in reptiles into a job at the Natural History Museum where she was befriended by the curator. She designed and updated a species-friendly Reptile House of the London Zoo where two of the special animals on display were Komodo dragons. One dragon, Sumbawa, allowed Joan to take care of a sore in his mouth, and the two of them became especially close. The book includes anecdotes about the reactions of onlookers to Sumbawa and how annoyed Joan felt when reporters were interested in asking her silly questions about herself instead of questions about the animals. Back matter includes photographs of the real Joan Procter and information about her life and the Komodo dragons. Sadly, health issues caused her to die at 34. There is also a bibliography and some paintings of the creatures she studied and loved. What a fascinating woman and what amazing animals! This title would fit nicely in a collection devoted to women or groundbreaking women or one focusing on zoos or rare and fascinating animals.
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  • QNPoohBear
    January 1, 1970
    Joan Proctor was an early 20th-century herpetologist at the British Natural History Museum and London Zoo. Without much formal education in science, she developed a passion for studying reptiles and amphibians early on in life. A sickly child, her best friend was her pet crocodile! She was able to take advantage of the vacancies left by men during WWI to enter into the profession. She was truly passionate about her creatures and made the London Zoo a better place. The book contains a biography a Joan Proctor was an early 20th-century herpetologist at the British Natural History Museum and London Zoo. Without much formal education in science, she developed a passion for studying reptiles and amphibians early on in life. A sickly child, her best friend was her pet crocodile! She was able to take advantage of the vacancies left by men during WWI to enter into the profession. She was truly passionate about her creatures and made the London Zoo a better place. The book contains a biography and a timeline of events. I liked the short, easy to read prose and learned a lot about this woman I had never heard of. These types of animals are not my thing but Joan reminded me of one of my dearest friends. My major problem with this book is the cartoony illustrations. I did not get a sense of what Komodo Dragons and other animals REALLY looked like with the flat 2D drawings. I would have liked more lifelike illustrations and more of Joan Proctor's own drawings like those shown at the end of the book. I think kids who love reptiles will like this story and kids who hate reptiles might learn to like them.
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  • Kirsten
    January 1, 1970
    This was a HUGE hit with my animal-obsessed preschooler. It discusses the career and accomplishments of a pioneering herpetologist in a kid-friendly and humorous way. Procter’s chronic illness and wheelchair use are also touched upon. The back matter provides valuable biographical information for parents/older kids, as well as scientific background on Komodo dragons. I enjoyed the lively illustrations, although at times the style seemed a bit flat and inconsistent — some illustrations are much m This was a HUGE hit with my animal-obsessed preschooler. It discusses the career and accomplishments of a pioneering herpetologist in a kid-friendly and humorous way. Procter’s chronic illness and wheelchair use are also touched upon. The back matter provides valuable biographical information for parents/older kids, as well as scientific background on Komodo dragons. I enjoyed the lively illustrations, although at times the style seemed a bit flat and inconsistent — some illustrations are much more detailed than others.Warning: you may need to explain to your child that crocodiles don’t really make good pets.Notes on representation: positive depiction of wheelchair use. Procter was white, but crowd scenes are appropriately diverse.
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  • Heidi Burkhart
    January 1, 1970
    I loved the story! The illustrations were wonderful. [Only two things bothered me. When Joan is 16 she receives a baby crocodile. The illustration makes Joan look like a seven year old! On the facing page is an illustration of Joan taking that same crocodile to school. The two students who are crouching close to see it also look like young children, not women from a high school class]. A delightful book that I think many kids would enjoy. It is also an inspiring story for girls who may wish to p I loved the story! The illustrations were wonderful. [Only two things bothered me. When Joan is 16 she receives a baby crocodile. The illustration makes Joan look like a seven year old! On the facing page is an illustration of Joan taking that same crocodile to school. The two students who are crouching close to see it also look like young children, not women from a high school class]. A delightful book that I think many kids would enjoy. It is also an inspiring story for girls who may wish to pursue the biological sciences.
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  • Tasha
    January 1, 1970
    Ever since she was a little girl, Joan Procter loved lizards and other reptiles and amphibians. She dismissed dolls in favor of her animals, even having a baby alligator as a pet and taking it to school with her. But Joan was born in the late 1800s, so girls were not expected to study science, still she sought out the curator of reptiles and fish at the Natural History Museum rather than going to dances. With England at war, Joan was asked to work at the museum and eventually took over as curato Ever since she was a little girl, Joan Procter loved lizards and other reptiles and amphibians. She dismissed dolls in favor of her animals, even having a baby alligator as a pet and taking it to school with her. But Joan was born in the late 1800s, so girls were not expected to study science, still she sought out the curator of reptiles and fish at the Natural History Museum rather than going to dances. With England at war, Joan was asked to work at the museum and eventually took over as curator. She designed the Reptile House at the London Zoo, using her artistic and scientific skills and created a habitat for their new Komodo dragons. Joan grew especially fond of Sumbawa, one of the Komodo dragons, who was gentle enough to walk outside with her and attend tea parties with children.This picture book biography takes just the right tone about Joan’s life, filled with delight at her bringing an alligator to school and also relishing in her series of high-profile successes. The final pages of the book offer more details about Joan’s life and her early death at age 34. It also has more information about Komodo dragons and a robust bibliography. The illustrations has just the right mix of playfulness and science, showing the reptiles up close and also Joan’s own connection with them.A brilliant look at an amazing woman who broke into science thanks to her skill and passion. Appropriate for ages 6-9.
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  • Robyn Schultz
    January 1, 1970
    Really liked this book! Made me want to learn more about Joan Procter. There is an excellent bibliography at the end, so that's easy.
  • Kristy
    January 1, 1970
    Gorgeous and really really interesting.
  • Christy
    January 1, 1970
    The author weaves a great true story about a fascinating, trailblazing young woman who loved reptiles. In the 1920s, she became a world-renowned expert who ran the London Zoo's reptile house and, apparently without a lot of formal training, could perform delicate surgeries on dangerous reptiles. The story of her relationships with the Komodo dragons, and how she helped to educate people about them, will be particularly compelling to young readers. And the illustrations are eye-popping and beauti The author weaves a great true story about a fascinating, trailblazing young woman who loved reptiles. In the 1920s, she became a world-renowned expert who ran the London Zoo's reptile house and, apparently without a lot of formal training, could perform delicate surgeries on dangerous reptiles. The story of her relationships with the Komodo dragons, and how she helped to educate people about them, will be particularly compelling to young readers. And the illustrations are eye-popping and beautiful. There's also good back matter including a fuller biography, which notes Proctor's health issues and her early death, and a bibliography. And it's a great title, too. I love this book! (I reviewed an advance copy.)
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  • Clementine
    January 1, 1970
    Cool art and a pretty decent overview of a pioneer woman working with reptiles, but the incredibly oblique references to her chronic illness coupled with pictures of her riding through a zoo in a wheelchair were a little jarring.
  • Cathy Mealey
    January 1, 1970
    Lovely language and engaging illustrations energize this amazing picture book biography about a trailblazing scientist from debut author Patricia Valdez and illustrator Felicita Sala.Fascinated by reptiles from an early age, Joan Procter followed her childhood passion for slithery, scaly, unusual animals to an internationally renowned career at London’s Zoo and the Natural History Museum. Valdez introduces us to young, curious Joan, holding tea parties with reptiles while her peers preferred dol Lovely language and engaging illustrations energize this amazing picture book biography about a trailblazing scientist from debut author Patricia Valdez and illustrator Felicita Sala.Fascinated by reptiles from an early age, Joan Procter followed her childhood passion for slithery, scaly, unusual animals to an internationally renowned career at London’s Zoo and the Natural History Museum. Valdez introduces us to young, curious Joan, holding tea parties with reptiles while her peers preferred dolls. As Joan grew, her interest did not wane, so at 16 years old she received a pet crocodile as a birthday gift!In due time, Joan chatted up the director of Natural History museum about his work with reptiles. She began working there, surveying the museum’s vast collections, publishing research papers, and creating detailed, realistic models and drawings for the reptile exhibits. Given her enthusiasm, experience and extensive knowledge, Joan eventually became the Curator, an unusual role for a female scientist at the time.When invited to re-design the London Zoo Reptile House, Joan fell in love with a new and exotic creature, the Komodo dragon. This so-called fierce, man-eating lizard was “rumored to be…Thirty feet long! Faster than a motorcar! Stronger than an ox!” Joan, undeterred, could not wait to study the dragons first-hand. Her deep connection with one Komodo called Sumbawa led to some of the most stunning and innovative work of her career. Valdez keeps the paces of this fascinating story lively by introducing wonderful vocabulary woven carefully and completely within a child-friendly framework and perspective. She highlights her heroine’s passion and determination in an understated yet direct manner, giving Joan relevance and timeliness that transcend her timeperiod. JOAN PROCTER, DRAGON DOCTOR is an essential addition for collections on women in STEM fields, with the broad appeal of reptiles and science for many young readers boosts this title to the top.Salas illustrates dramatically, choosing with vibrant, rich colors for the settings, the tropical plants, and the starring-role reptiles. Joan is elegant yet serious, portrayed close to and interacting with her creatures, focused on them with great intensity, delight and passion. The reptiles themselves are marvelously textured and stylized, creeping, curving and twisting with dignified realism. Throughout the story, Salas provides tantalizing glimpses of early 20th century London through architecture and fashions of the era.The author includes additional biographical information on Procter as well as on Komodo Dragons. A bibliography with primary and secondary sources is a helpful resource for young readers who wish to explore more. Don’t miss the opportunity to learn about this impressive scientist, her beloved ‘dragons’ and her trailblazing career in a book that is as beautiful and brilliant as it is important.
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  • Cathy Mealey
    January 1, 1970
    Lovely language and engaging illustrations energize this amazing picture book biography about a trailblazing scientist from debut author Patricia Valdez and illustrator Felicita Sala.Fascinated by reptiles from an early age, Joan Procter followed her childhood passion for slithery, scaly, unusual animals to an internationally renowned career at London’s Zoo and the Natural History Museum. Valdez introduces us to young, curious Joan, holding tea parties with reptiles while her peers preferred dol Lovely language and engaging illustrations energize this amazing picture book biography about a trailblazing scientist from debut author Patricia Valdez and illustrator Felicita Sala.Fascinated by reptiles from an early age, Joan Procter followed her childhood passion for slithery, scaly, unusual animals to an internationally renowned career at London’s Zoo and the Natural History Museum. Valdez introduces us to young, curious Joan, holding tea parties with reptiles while her peers preferred dolls. As Joan grew, her interest did not wane, so at 16 years old she received a pet crocodile as a birthday gift!In due time, Joan chatted up the director of Natural History museum about his work with reptiles. She began working there, surveying the museum’s vast collections, publishing research papers, and creating detailed, realistic models and drawings for the reptile exhibits. Given her enthusiasm, experience and extensive knowledge, Joan eventually became the Curator, an unusual role for a female scientist at the time.When invited to re-design the London Zoo Reptile House, Joan fell in love with a new and exotic creature, the Komodo dragon. This so-called fierce, man-eating lizard was “rumored to be…Thirty feet long! Faster than a motorcar! Stronger than an ox!” Joan, undeterred, could not wait to study the dragons first-hand. Her deep connection with one Komodo called Sumbawa led to some of the most stunning and innovative work of her career. Valdez keeps the paces of this fascinating story lively by introducing wonderful vocabulary woven carefully and completely within a child-friendly framework and perspective. She highlights her heroine’s passion and determination in an understated yet direct manner, giving Joan relevance and timeliness that transcend her timeperiod. JOAN PROCTER, DRAGON DOCTOR is an essential addition for collections on women in STEM fields, with the broad appeal of reptiles and science for many young readers boosts this title to the top.Salas illustrates dramatically, choosing with vibrant, rich colors for the settings, the tropical plants, and the starring-role reptiles. Joan is elegant yet serious, portrayed close to and interacting with her creatures, focused on them with great intensity, delight and passion. The reptiles themselves are marvelously textured and stylized, creeping, curving and twisting with dignified realism. Throughout the story, Salas provides tantalizing glimpses of early 20th century London through architecture and fashions of the era.The author includes additional biographical information on Procter as well as on Komodo Dragons. A bibliography with primary and secondary sources is a helpful resource for young readers who wish to explore more. Don’t miss the opportunity to learn about this impressive scientist, her beloved ‘dragons’ and her trailblazing career in a book that is as beautiful and brilliant as it is important.
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  • Beth Anderson
    January 1, 1970
    With a touch of humor, this biography follows the path of a girl who was different, one who was fascinated by reptiles. Like these creatures, she was unique, quiet, and interesting. When the Komodo dragon was discovered, it inspired curiosity and fear. Joan, not only led the way in studying this creature, but bravely administered to a sick giant lizard, attracting the attention of the public.Joan’s love of reptiles clearly comes through in the text and illustrations. This is a great story for a With a touch of humor, this biography follows the path of a girl who was different, one who was fascinated by reptiles. Like these creatures, she was unique, quiet, and interesting. When the Komodo dragon was discovered, it inspired curiosity and fear. Joan, not only led the way in studying this creature, but bravely administered to a sick giant lizard, attracting the attention of the public.Joan’s love of reptiles clearly comes through in the text and illustrations. This is a great story for a number of reasons. So many children are interested in reptiles, and the Komodo dragon – WOW! A crocodile at school? That will get their attention! For those who feel a bit squeamish about reptiles, Joan Procter’s affinity for them shows that our fears are often unfounded or dispelled by knowledge. There’s also an art/science connection that invites exploration.The cover absolutely grabbed me and has got to be one of my all-time favorites. The illustrations throughout are fun and a great marriage with the engaging text.
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  • Jessie Oliveros
    January 1, 1970
    I've been reading many picture book biographies lately, and this one definitely stands out. Joan Proctor loved reptiles as a child--studying them, caring for them, watching them, even having tea parties with them! As an adult, she became the first female curator at the Reptile House of the London Zoo. She did a lot of work with Komodo dragons. They were highly misunderstood at the time, and she introduced them to the world as the gentle creatures they are. In her short life, Joan became world re I've been reading many picture book biographies lately, and this one definitely stands out. Joan Proctor loved reptiles as a child--studying them, caring for them, watching them, even having tea parties with them! As an adult, she became the first female curator at the Reptile House of the London Zoo. She did a lot of work with Komodo dragons. They were highly misunderstood at the time, and she introduced them to the world as the gentle creatures they are. In her short life, Joan became world renowned for her work. The pictures are wonderful--very colorful, unique, and fun. And there are so many elements that would appeal to children, all written in such an engaging way: The tea parties with lizards (that deserves two mentions)! The "fearsome" Komodo dragons. Her pet crocodile when she was just 16. And the surgeries she performed on the lizards. Joan Proctor was a fascinating woman, and I'm excited for young readers to get to know her better!
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  • Stephanie Tournas
    January 1, 1970
    This is a superlative picture book biography of an interesting woman who became a herpetologist in the 1920's, when women were thought incapable of doing such a job. What I especially like is the believable description of Procter as a young girl - how she loved reptiles and followed her dream of studying them. With sly humor, Valdez gives the reader the vicarious experience of the amazed visitors and curators of the Natural History Museum as they watch an utterly confident Procter handle the mon This is a superlative picture book biography of an interesting woman who became a herpetologist in the 1920's, when women were thought incapable of doing such a job. What I especially like is the believable description of Procter as a young girl - how she loved reptiles and followed her dream of studying them. With sly humor, Valdez gives the reader the vicarious experience of the amazed visitors and curators of the Natural History Museum as they watch an utterly confident Procter handle the monitors, pythons, Komodo dragons, and other frightening reptiles. The beguiling illustrations have a retro feel. They set Procter's life firmly in the early 20th century, show great details of the reptiles, and are entertaining to boot. Back matter includes additional biographical information, more about Komodo dragons, a bibliography, and reproductions of some of Procter's original painting of her creatures.
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  • Peacegal
    January 1, 1970
    4.5 stars -- This book is an absolute delight. Young readers are introduced to Joan Procter, a woman with a passion for science and reptiles. It's great and encouraging to see these biographies of pioneering women, and inspiring to young girls who may not have traditionally "girly" interests. It's true, this story takes place in the early 1900s and standards of animal care weren't always what they are today. As a child, Joan had a crocodile as a pet, and later in life, she didn't always seem to 4.5 stars -- This book is an absolute delight. Young readers are introduced to Joan Procter, a woman with a passion for science and reptiles. It's great and encouraging to see these biographies of pioneering women, and inspiring to young girls who may not have traditionally "girly" interests. It's true, this story takes place in the early 1900s and standards of animal care weren't always what they are today. As a child, Joan had a crocodile as a pet, and later in life, she didn't always seem to exercise the best of caution with her favorite Komodo dragon, taking the large carnivorous lizard out in public on a leash. Nowadays, with private individuals buying exotic wildlife as pets from auctions and the Internet, it's important to communicate the problems involved with all of this for the safety and welfare of both people and the animals themselves. This book opens up the possibility for further discussion of this topic, however.
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  • Martha
    January 1, 1970
    Viewing the cover with Joan Proctor Dragon Doctor balancing a baby crocodile on her head, and a snake wrapping around her neck, it is true, this biography won't remain on the shelf long. Accompanied by exquisite colorful illustrations of Joan with her pet lizards as a very young girl, her biography states that her passion for snakes, and lizards, developed early. By the time she was 16-years-old she had her own pet crocodile, that she even brought to school. As an adult she became the first woma Viewing the cover with Joan Proctor Dragon Doctor balancing a baby crocodile on her head, and a snake wrapping around her neck, it is true, this biography won't remain on the shelf long. Accompanied by exquisite colorful illustrations of Joan with her pet lizards as a very young girl, her biography states that her passion for snakes, and lizards, developed early. By the time she was 16-years-old she had her own pet crocodile, that she even brought to school. As an adult she became the first woman curator of the Reptile House at the London Zoo, and even studied, housed, and presented her findings about two newly discovered Komodo Dragons, zoo residents of her zoo, at the Scientific Meeting of the Zoological Society of London in 1928. Her fascinating story ends with a mini biography of her life in the back of the book, and a comprehensive bibliography. Any student interested in reptiles will devour this handsome picture biography. A must buy for all elementary libraries.
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  • Cat
    January 1, 1970
    What a remarkable woman! I had never heard of her until this book came along. The story about her love of reptiles was so wonderful. I had always heard how dangerous Komodo dragons were and was quite alarmed that she allowed one of hers to roam freely at events! I know they have every venomous mouths. I can't imagine anyone these days allowing the m to just walk around in crowds! Scary! But then, back in those days, parents allowed their children to ride alligators (photos are out there!) and I What a remarkable woman! I had never heard of her until this book came along. The story about her love of reptiles was so wonderful. I had always heard how dangerous Komodo dragons were and was quite alarmed that she allowed one of hers to roam freely at events! I know they have every venomous mouths. I can't imagine anyone these days allowing the m to just walk around in crowds! Scary! But then, back in those days, parents allowed their children to ride alligators (photos are out there!) and I am sure, do other crazy stuff that would horrify us today! Lol! Great book, very enjoyable read for grade schoolers. Also has a nice bio at the end of her and Komodo dragons. Illustrations were fun to look at and added to the story nicely.
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  • Viviane Elbee
    January 1, 1970
    This is a fascinating non-fiction picture book biography about Joan Procter, a lady who was born in 1897 in London England, and who grew up to become the head curator of the Natural History Museum's reptile & fish department and the curator of reptiles, as well as the designer of the Reptile House, at the London Zoo.It's beautifully written and the illustrations by Felicita Sala fit this story well.The kids loved it and voted to give it 5 stars.Great for: kids who love reptiles, komodo drago This is a fascinating non-fiction picture book biography about Joan Procter, a lady who was born in 1897 in London England, and who grew up to become the head curator of the Natural History Museum's reptile & fish department and the curator of reptiles, as well as the designer of the Reptile House, at the London Zoo.It's beautifully written and the illustrations by Felicita Sala fit this story well.The kids loved it and voted to give it 5 stars.Great for: kids who love reptiles, komodo dragons, crocodiles, science fans, non-fiction biography fans. It would also work well in elementary school classrooms and homeschooling.I received an ARC for review, but will be putting this book on my "wish to purchase" list.
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  • Kat Harrison
    January 1, 1970
    There is so much to love in JOAN PROCTER, DRAGON DOCTOR. First off, that title! Secondly, the illustrations are as charming as can be and really transport the reader to Joan's world. Lastly, and most important, is how much I adored learning about Joan and what she was passionate about...reptiles! The text wasn't overly simplistic, but at the same time, read as nicely as a fictional narrative without being bogged down by facts. In the back matter, I was surprised to learn about Joan's battle with There is so much to love in JOAN PROCTER, DRAGON DOCTOR. First off, that title! Secondly, the illustrations are as charming as can be and really transport the reader to Joan's world. Lastly, and most important, is how much I adored learning about Joan and what she was passionate about...reptiles! The text wasn't overly simplistic, but at the same time, read as nicely as a fictional narrative without being bogged down by facts. In the back matter, I was surprised to learn about Joan's battle with chronic illness and in a way, I wished the story would've touched on that. But at the same time, I understand that Valdez wanted to honor her passion and accomplishments without dipping too much into the peripheral personal details.
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  • Kathy
    January 1, 1970
    I read this to my mother who is 81 and she really enjoyed it. I also read this to a fifth grader that I tutor, and he loved it. We started a very small notebook with ideas for stories and book reports in the front and new vocabulary in the back. He was excited to add this book to the front of his little 3" notebook. He is looking forward to the next time the teacher asks him to write something, and he can use his little idea book. We will add story ideas and vocabulary each week.This book will r I read this to my mother who is 81 and she really enjoyed it. I also read this to a fifth grader that I tutor, and he loved it. We started a very small notebook with ideas for stories and book reports in the front and new vocabulary in the back. He was excited to add this book to the front of his little 3" notebook. He is looking forward to the next time the teacher asks him to write something, and he can use his little idea book. We will add story ideas and vocabulary each week.This book will resonate with girls as well as boys. It is amazing that Joan was such a trail blazer way back then. She died in 1931, so her work was a long time ago. Great book! All of you librarians should order it for elementary schools.
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  • Jen Betton
    January 1, 1970
    Joan Procter liked to invite slithery and scaly guests to her tea parties – she even had a pet baby crocodile! When she gets older, Joan works at the natural history museum and takes care of the reptiles at the London Zoo – including real, live, Komodo dragons! Joan's tea parties come full circle at the end of the book, where a dragon is the guest of honor! A fun biography highlighting the life of a pioneering female zoologist! I especially love the illustrations – such beautiful textures and co Joan Procter liked to invite slithery and scaly guests to her tea parties – she even had a pet baby crocodile! When she gets older, Joan works at the natural history museum and takes care of the reptiles at the London Zoo – including real, live, Komodo dragons! Joan's tea parties come full circle at the end of the book, where a dragon is the guest of honor! A fun biography highlighting the life of a pioneering female zoologist! I especially love the illustrations – such beautiful textures and color palettes.
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  • Lynn
    January 1, 1970
    Excellent picture book biography of trail-blazing Joan Procter who was the first woman curator of reptiles for the London Zoo in 1923! Lively text and Felicita Sala's wonderful bright illustrations full of fascinating details make this a real treat for you nature lover's.I especially enjoyed the extensive back matter that provided more information on Procter and tragically short life and on komodo dragons as well. There is an enticing bibliography and I'm itching to track down some of the refere Excellent picture book biography of trail-blazing Joan Procter who was the first woman curator of reptiles for the London Zoo in 1923! Lively text and Felicita Sala's wonderful bright illustrations full of fascinating details make this a real treat for you nature lover's.I especially enjoyed the extensive back matter that provided more information on Procter and tragically short life and on komodo dragons as well. There is an enticing bibliography and I'm itching to track down some of the references listed.
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  • Cindy Chambers
    January 1, 1970
    I love this book. And for someone not particularly fond of snakes, that's saying a lot. What I love about it, is the story of a girl who, through her passion and curiosity, brings better understanding and better treatment of reptiles to the world. Valdez is able to give us a thorough overview of Joan Procter's life and accomplishment while keeping the text brief and kid-friendly. Endnotes provide interesting added information but aren't necessary for full enjoyment and understanding of the book.
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  • Andi Diehn
    January 1, 1970
    The world needs more picture books about female scientists and JOAN PROCTER, DRAGON DOCTOR is an excellent addition! This book follows Joan from her first experiences with reptiles as a young girl to her work at the Natural History Museum and on to her role as curator of reptiles at the London Zoo. Most touching is her friendship with Sumbawa, a Komodo dragon she helped nurse to health. Kids will love learning about this impressive character as they imagine what it might be like to have tea with The world needs more picture books about female scientists and JOAN PROCTER, DRAGON DOCTOR is an excellent addition! This book follows Joan from her first experiences with reptiles as a young girl to her work at the Natural History Museum and on to her role as curator of reptiles at the London Zoo. Most touching is her friendship with Sumbawa, a Komodo dragon she helped nurse to health. Kids will love learning about this impressive character as they imagine what it might be like to have tea with a crocodile... Beautifully illustrated by Felicita Sala.
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