The Dinosaurs of

Waterhouse Hawkins


Once almost no one knew what a dinosaur looked like.  Then an amazing artist introduced dinosaurs to the world.

Illustrated by Brian Selznick

Published by Scholastic Press, 2001

ISBN 0-439-11494-2

Find this book: IndieBound, B&N, amazon, and goodreads

Caldecott Honor Book

New York Times bestseller

ALA Notable Book

ABC Children’s Booksellers Choices Awards

Best Children’s Books -- Publisher’s Weekly

Reading Magic Award -- Parenting Magazine

Book Sense Book of the Year nominee

Borders Original Voices nominee

NCTE Orbis Pictus Honor Book

Best Book Award -- Oppenheim Toy Portfolio

Gold Award Winner -- The National Parenting Publications Awards

Garden State (NJ) Book Award

California Collections

Los Angeles 100 Best Books -- IRA/Los Angeles USD Library Services

Nominated for Young Reader awards in TX, KY, OK, RI, LA and CO

Nominated for the 2014 Bluestem Award, IL School Library Media Assoc

Translated into Japanese, Korean, and Chinese

"Who could resist?  Staring straight out from the handsome album-like cover is a slight man with a shock of white hair and an intense, intelligent gaze.  Over his shoulder looms the enormous mouth of a dinosaur.  This is perfectly designed to pique reader's curiosity with one of the strangest true stories dinosaur lovers will ever read.  The man is Waterhouse Hawkins, who, in Victorian England, devoted his life to making ordinary people aware of dinosaurs at a time when most had never heard of them and could not imagine what they looked like.... Stunning."


                                                                        Kirkus Reviews, starred review

"One look at this amazing-but-true picture book introducing the little-known artist Hawkins and his dreams of dinosaurs, and kids may well forget about Jurassic Park.... [Kerley] suffuses her text with a contagious sense of wonder and amazement.  Selznick enthusiastically joins the excitement with his intricate compositions.... Extensive author and illustrator notes denote the extensive (and fun) research both undertook for this extraordinary volume."

                                                                Publishers Weekly, starred review

"What a marvelous pairing: the life of the nineteenth-century British dinosaur maven Waterhouse Hawkins and Selznick's richly evocative, Victorian inspired paintings.... Although many of Hawkins' dinosaur models are now known to be inaccurate, the passion of his life and his single-minded pursuit of it rings loud and clear.  Appealing on many levels, this will be a favorite dinosaur book for years to come."

                                                                                Booklist, starred review

"Kerley's spirited text and Selznick's dramatic paintings bring Hawkins's efforts into clear focus.... Painstakingly researched, written and illustrated with careful attention to detail, this book presents the fervor and spirit of a dedicated, little-known individual whose conceptions...astounded the minds and stirred the imaginations of scientists then involved in the actual birth of paleontology.  A distinguished book in every way."

                                                                                School Library Journal

"Make history buffs of your junior dinophiles with this story." 

                                                                        Working Mother Magazine

"This is a dinosaur book unlike any other.... Whimsical...brilliant...elegant." 

                                                                                             Riverbank Review

"This is a great addition to any personal or school library."  Spectrum Magazine

"Marvelous."  New York Times

"Done with uncommon flair."  San Francisco Chronicle

"One of the season's best offerings."  The Leaven

"This is by far the best dinosaur book -- EVER!"  Louisville Parent

"Exhilarating."  Mahoning Valley Parent

"Excellent."  Kansas City Star 

"Enduring appeal."  Orlando Sentinel

"Exciting."  Rochester Democrat and Chronicle

"Spirited."  Big Apple Parent

"Visually stunning."  Berkeley Parents' Press

"Breathtaking."  Bothell Northshore Citizen

Did you know?...

As a kid, illustrator Brian Selznick used to make tiny dinosaur models out of tin foil.  Why not give it a try?