Like most kids, I was fascinated by dinosaurs when I first learned about them. Unlike most kids, I never really lost the fascination. An entire family of beasts that science could tell us very little about! This left huge gaps for my eager young imagination to fill. In hindsight, this was a foreshadowing of what would become a persistent interest in the unknown. My favorite books have always been mysteries, dating back to Encyclopedia Brown and The Boxcar Children until my modern day fanhood of Lawrence Block and John Sandford. My favorite TV shows – by a wide margin – are Monk and Pysch. My favorite type of math? Algebra – I always enjoy solving for the “unknown.”

I read nearly everything I could about dinosaurs when I was a kid. For the parents out there – if your kids have a fascination with some subject, encourage it. A desire to learn more about a specific topic can bleed over into a general desire to learn. My early fascination with sports and dinosaurs encouraged me to read. The desire to read also helped improve my reading comprehension and made me a better student.

Here are some of the more interesting dinosaur books I have read:

  • In the 1990s, I was exposed to Michael Crichton’s Jurassic Park. The thought that we could manufacture living, breathing dinosaurs was very appealing to me – after all, who wouldn’t love to have a pet dinosaur in their back yard? It worked out OK for The Flintstones. I have read Jurassic Park and Lost Word multiple times, and have watched all three of the movies. Interestingly, Jurassic Park was my gateway novel to the world of Michael Crichton. Over the past few years, I have read a lot of his books.
  • I nabbed a copy of Eric Garcia’s Anonymous Rex mostly because there is a dinosaur on the cover (well, a dinosaur tail, anyway). (Hint to book publishers – put a dinosaur on the cover of a book and I can guarantee that I’ll at least give it a glance). Anonymous Rex is one of those books that you will either love or hate. You will think that it is the dumbest book you have ever read, or you will find it incredibly funny. The premise is that dinosaurs never died out, and are in fact living among us. They wear disguises, of course – the finest latest human suits that money can buy. Garcia subsequently published Casual Rex (a prequel) and Hot and Sweaty Rex. I haven’t had a chance to read them yet, but I enjoyed Anonymous Rex enough that the other Rex books are definitely on my reading list.
  • A recent find was a nifty little pocket reference guide from the Pockets of Knowledge series (published by DK Pockets), aptly titled Dinosaurs. I got a good deal on these and actually snapped up all the copies the store had. The book’s dimensions are small, but it’s really a pretty handy reference guide. Some of the book’s features include: a dinosaur classification chart, a list of major discoverers, dinosaur anatomy, information about the vareity of fossils found on each continent, and much more. It’s far from a comprehensive reference guide, but it packs a lot of information for a book that actually will fit in the back pocket of your jeans.

If you’re interested in these books, there are a couple of ways to obtain them. You can, of course, BUY them. If you choose to buy them, I hope you consider using the Amazon widget on the right side of the screen. When you buy by clicking on one of those links, I receive a commission on the sale – at no additional cost to you (the commission comes out of Amazon’s profits). Psst – Jurassic Park Adventure Pack is a steal – $15 for all three movies on DVD!

What’s the other way? Watch later in the day for a giveaway that will allow you to win Anonymous Rex or the Pockets of Knowledge Dinosaur book!

Anonymous Rex

DK Pockets – Dinosaurs

Jurassic Park – Book

Jurassic Park
DVD combo pack
All 3 movies!