I was reminded again of how much we love this author. Is it the brilliance of the text? Not so much. The glory of the illustrations? Not exactly. I think what it is has to do with the perfect marriage of text and imagery Arnosky offers in all of his books. He writes simple story lines... easy enough for a 2 year old to sit through, yet engaging enough for an 8 year old to appreciate. And he doesn't fictionalize things or indulge in anthropomorphism like so many other popular kiddy books do— I have no problem with talking animals, believe you me... but all things have their place. And animals in Arnosky's books are simply stars in the natural history story he has to tell. And they are excellent.
Anyway, Jim Arnosky provides good stuff all around! Go get some books!