92 books like The Illustrated Dinosaur Dictionary

By Helen Roney Sattler,

Here are 92 books that The Illustrated Dinosaur Dictionary fans have personally recommended if you like The Illustrated Dinosaur Dictionary. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

Shepherd is reader supported. When you buy books, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Book cover of Evolving Planet: Four Billion Years of Life on Earth

Steven Clark Cunningham Author Of Dinosaur Name Poems/Poemas de Nombres de Dinosaurios

From my list on dinosaurs with poetry, pop-up, and paleontology.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am, like so many other young people (yes, I still think of myself as young!), fascinated with dinosaurs and prehistory, and have been for as long as I can remember. What I really find interesting and engaging is the combination of the fact that they do not exist anymore and therefore are otherworldly with the fact that they are real and actually of this world!

Steven's book list on dinosaurs with poetry, pop-up, and paleontology

Steven Clark Cunningham Why did Steven love this book?

What I really love about this book is that 1) it is written by experts in the field, including a PhD evolutionary biologist and paleontologist, 2) it has an excellent balance of illustrations and text, and 3) it places dinosaurs and other prehistoric creatures in context as it tells the story of how they evolved through time.

By Erica Kelly, Richard Kissel,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Evolving Planet as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"Evolving Planet" is based on the new permanent exhibition of the same name at the Field Museum (opened in spring 2006). The book takes readers on an inspiring journey through 4 billion years of life on Earth, from single-celled organisms to towering dinosaurs to woolly mammoths to humans. Unique fossils, photographs, illustrations and maps help bring the story to life. It includes a pronunciation guide, glossary and index.


Book cover of Dinosaurs: The Most Complete, Up-to-Date Encyclopedia for Dinosaur Lovers of All Ages

Steven Clark Cunningham Author Of Dinosaur Name Poems/Poemas de Nombres de Dinosaurios

From my list on dinosaurs with poetry, pop-up, and paleontology.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am, like so many other young people (yes, I still think of myself as young!), fascinated with dinosaurs and prehistory, and have been for as long as I can remember. What I really find interesting and engaging is the combination of the fact that they do not exist anymore and therefore are otherworldly with the fact that they are real and actually of this world!

Steven's book list on dinosaurs with poetry, pop-up, and paleontology

Steven Clark Cunningham Why did Steven love this book?

Published in association with the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology, this >400-page tome is beautifully and thoughtfully illustrated in color with amply detailed text so that it appeals to broad ages of readers, with younger readers relying more on the illustrations or an older co-reader. Written by a team of paleontologists, it is helpfully organized in 42 bite-sized chapters ranging from overview topics in the beginning to more specific ones toward the end.

By Thomas R. Holtz Jr., Luis V. Rey (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Dinosaurs as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

An award-winning encyclopdia written for young people—dubbed the "Dinosaur Bible" by enthusiasts!

Written by one of the world’s foremost experts on dinosaurs, this award-winning title—honored by the NSTA and the AAAS—is an essential addition to any dinophile’s library, regardless of age! Using casual language aimed at young people and non-scientists, it's a guide to all aspects of dinosaur science: how we figure out what dinosaurs looked like, how they lived, how they evolved, how they continue to live among us as birds, and much, much more. 

It also includes brief entries on all 800+ "named" species of Mesozoic dinosaurs, as…


Book cover of Encyclopedia Prehistorica Dinosaurs: The Definitive Pop-Up

Steven Clark Cunningham Author Of Dinosaur Name Poems/Poemas de Nombres de Dinosaurios

From my list on dinosaurs with poetry, pop-up, and paleontology.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am, like so many other young people (yes, I still think of myself as young!), fascinated with dinosaurs and prehistory, and have been for as long as I can remember. What I really find interesting and engaging is the combination of the fact that they do not exist anymore and therefore are otherworldly with the fact that they are real and actually of this world!

Steven's book list on dinosaurs with poetry, pop-up, and paleontology

Steven Clark Cunningham Why did Steven love this book?

While there are of course other books with more and better textual content, this book is an impressive work of pop-up art. I particularly like pop-up of the perennially favorite T. Rex, which quite literally jumps out of the book at you as you turn the page. Very well done.

By Robert Sabuda, Matthew Reinhart,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Encyclopedia Prehistorica Dinosaurs as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 5, 6, 7, and 8.

What is this book about?

From renowned pop-up masters Robert Sabuda and Matthew Reinhart comes an awe-inspiring tribute to the world's most beloved extinct animals and their 180-million-year reign on our planet.

Open this book and a massive T. REX springs out, flashing a startling jawful of jagged teeth. Turn the next spread and a ravishing raptor unfurls and appears to fly off the edge of the page. Inside the amazing ENCYCLOPEDIA PREHISTORICA: DINOSAURS are "shield bearers" in full-body armor, creatures with frilly headgear, and weighty, long-necked giants. There are even amusing tidbits on the history of paleontology itself — like a pop-up version of…


Book cover of Dinothesaurus: Prehistoric Poems and Paintings

Steven Clark Cunningham Author Of Dinosaur Name Poems/Poemas de Nombres de Dinosaurios

From my list on dinosaurs with poetry, pop-up, and paleontology.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am, like so many other young people (yes, I still think of myself as young!), fascinated with dinosaurs and prehistory, and have been for as long as I can remember. What I really find interesting and engaging is the combination of the fact that they do not exist anymore and therefore are otherworldly with the fact that they are real and actually of this world!

Steven's book list on dinosaurs with poetry, pop-up, and paleontology

Steven Clark Cunningham Why did Steven love this book?

What I really love about this book is the use of poetry and original and engaging illustrations to invite kids into reading. My favorite poem is “Barosaurus,” which does a particularly good job of inviting the young readers to engage their imagination with the book. While not my favorite Douglas Florian book, it is, like the other books from this very talented author and illustrator, well worth the read!

By Douglas Florian,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Dinothesaurus as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 6, 7, 8, and 9.

What is this book about?

This book is full of dinosaurs,

Both carnivores and herbivores.

You'll find a big Iguanodon,

As well as a clever Tro-o-don.

There's Spinosaurus and T. rex,

Plus plesiosaurs with giant necks,

And others from an ancient age.

Want to learn more?

Then turn the page!


Book cover of Dinosaurs a Children's Encyclopedia

Michael J. Benton Author Of Dinosaurs: New Visions of a Lost World

From my list on dinosaurs from a palaeontologist.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been mad about dinosaurs and ancient life since I was seven. I have been amazingly lucky to be able to develop a career as a professional palaeontologist and to be able to research and talk about the subject. We were first to show the original colours of dinosaur feathers, and this discovery provides a perfect way to open the discussion about how palaeontologists know what they say they know. In my books, I seek to amaze, amuse and inform. I have written many books, including pop science, textbooks, technical-scientific works, and books for children, and every year brings new discoveries to be transmitted to the world.

Michael's book list on dinosaurs from a palaeontologist

Michael J. Benton Why did Michael love this book?

The books so far are more for adults than children, although many children show remarkable powers of reading and learning with any dinosaur book. But this one is aimed at children, and it’s comprehensive and up-to-date.

Dinosaur fans love lists and catalogues, and they want a book that has everything. This is probably the best such book, and it packs in a huge amount of material into its 300 pages.

By Dorling Kindersley,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Dinosaurs a Children's Encyclopedia as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Travel back in time to learn about every kind of dinosaur with this comprehensive dinosaur book for children.

With nearly 400,000 copies sold Dinosaurs: A Children's Encyclopedia is a global best-seller. It includes detailed fact files and colour illustrations of more than 320 species.

Discover the biggest, the scariest, and the strangest animals ever to inhabit our world, from Triceratops and Tyrannosaurus to horse-eating prehistoric birds and giant millipedes the size of crocodiles. Find out exactly where and when each animal lived, how large it grew, and how it captured prey or fought off enemies. Expert-verified reconstructions reveal what each…


Book cover of I am not a Dinosaur!

S.K. Wenger Author Of Chicken Frank, Dinosaur!

From my list on dinosaurs and evolutionary relationships for kids.

Why am I passionate about this?

Long before becoming an author and awarded science teacher, I was a child who explored the unpaved colonial roads in rural New Hampshire and brought home bucket loads of tadpoles, frogs, and turtles from nearby wetlands. I knew the rock walls that lined those roads had been placed by others who’d worked the land long before. My curiosity extended to wondering what the area had been like before humans started changing things. In retrospect, perhaps I wrote Chicken Frank, Dinosaur! in part for that backwoods girl full of questions about the world around her. Equally so, it’s for every curious child—even those who aren’t sure about dipping their toes into the mud just yet. Enjoy!

Shaunda's book list on dinosaurs and evolutionary relationships for kids

S.K. Wenger Why did Shaunda love this book?

From the lizard-looking Dimetrodon to the wooly mammoth to the 1,000-pound turtle-like Glyptodont, as well as the modern-day Latimeria fish species that was believed to have gone extinct millions of years ago (Surprise! It turned up in a fisherman’s net!), puts this book in the “must-read” category. A bouncy rhyming text that highlights large creatures that roamed the Earth both before and alongside dinosaurs, makes this book a win, especially since it lands at a modern-day avian dinosaur that can be seen in tweety parakeet.

By Will Lach, Jonny Lambert (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked I am not a Dinosaur! as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Way back in time, astonishing creatures lived on our planet. But they weren’t all dinosaurs! In this fun, fascinating book, you’ll meet some of these amazing prehistoric creatures, from a very big fish with 7-inch teeth to a flying reptile. Based on specimens in the collections of the American Museum of Natural History, I Am NOT a Dinosaur! uses riddle-like rhymes and bright illustrations to reveal 16 creatures. With an introduction from Chairman of Paleontology at the Museum, Dr. Mark Norell, the book also features short notes, fossil photos, and an illustrated timeline to explain everything, simply and clearly, to…


Book cover of The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs: A New History of Their Lost World

Michael J. Benton Author Of Dinosaurs: New Visions of a Lost World

From my list on dinosaurs from a palaeontologist.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been mad about dinosaurs and ancient life since I was seven. I have been amazingly lucky to be able to develop a career as a professional palaeontologist and to be able to research and talk about the subject. We were first to show the original colours of dinosaur feathers, and this discovery provides a perfect way to open the discussion about how palaeontologists know what they say they know. In my books, I seek to amaze, amuse and inform. I have written many books, including pop science, textbooks, technical-scientific works, and books for children, and every year brings new discoveries to be transmitted to the world.

Michael's book list on dinosaurs from a palaeontologist

Michael J. Benton Why did Michael love this book?

The best seller of all time, a lively romp through dinosaur research (and researchers).

This is for all readers, and you’ll be hooked by the lively, pacy text by Steve, as he hurtles from continent to continent, digging up bones from China to Poland, working on Tyrannosaurus rex and other great beasts in the basements of the world’s museums, and sharing with readers what it’s like to be a working paleontologist.

For aspiring young bone-diggers, this is an inspiration, although it’s not like this all the time: paleontologists also sometimes have to mark student essays and fight with university systems to get their field trip costs refunded!

By Steve Brusatte,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Times Science Book of the Year.
A Sunday Times Bestseller.

66 million years ago the dinosaurs were wiped from the face of the earth. Today, Dr. Steve Brusatte, one of the leading scientists of a new generation of dinosaur hunters, armed with cutting edge technology, is piecing together the complete story of how the dinosaurs ruled the earth for 150 million years.

The world of the dinosaurs has fascinated on book and screen for decades - from early science fiction classics like The Lost World, to Godzilla terrorizing the streets of Tokyo, and the monsters of Jurassic Park. But…


Book cover of Emma Ren Junior Paleontologist

Kim Ann Author Of Where Do Dinosaurs Go on Vacation?

From my list on for dinosaur fans.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a children’s book author that writes fun, colorful, imaginative books that help children develop a love of stories. My passion for books started at a young age, as one of my favorite things to do was visit the local library with my mom. I have had a lifelong passion for writing and began writing poetry books at nine years old for my school library. I started writing and publishing children’s picture books professionally and founded my publishing company, Lucky Four Press, LLC, in 2019. I hope you enjoy these dino-tastic books I recommended!

Kim's book list on for dinosaur fans

Kim Ann Why did Kim love this book?

Jenny Lu writes wonderful STEM children’s books.

In this story, Emma the main character, is learning about dinosaurs and fossils in school, so her class goes on a field trip to the Natural History Museum. When she learns she will be digging in the dirt to uncover fossils, she isn’t too happy, but she later discovers it can be fun.

A great educational book with facts about dinosaurs and fossils.

By Jenny Lu, George Sweetland (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Emma Ren Junior Paleontologist as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Looking for a fun and engaging STEM children's book that will inspire STEM in your child? Your child will love Emma Ren Junior Paleontologist!

Emma thinks dinosaurs are scary, so when her class goes on a trip to the Natural History Museum to study dinosaurs and fossils, she isn’t at all keen…

...she’s partnered with Jake to find a fossil in a big chunk of dirt. Luckily, Jake LOVES dinosaurs and is happy to take the lead, but will Emma be able to overcome her fear so she can be a paleontologist for the day?

The story features Mary Anning…


Book cover of Dinosaurs Ever Evolving: The Changing Face of Prehistoric Animals in Popular Culture

Dougal Dixon Author Of After Man: A Zoology of the Future

From my list on popular depiction of evolution.

Why am I passionate about this?

Dougal Dixon graduated from the University of St. Andrews with two degrees in geology. But although his education was entirely scientific his background was deeply artistic – a potentially unemployable combination back in the ‘70s. And so he ended up in publishing, as the Earth Science editor for an illustrated encyclopedia publisher. Since then he has become a full-time writer, specializing in geological articles for encyclopedias, handbooks on fossil collecting, and principally children’s books on dinosaurs. As well as that he has done a number of books on speculative evolution – exploring the principles of biology in novel ways.

Dougal's book list on popular depiction of evolution

Dougal Dixon Why did Dougal love this book?

Like Wilford’s book, this one goes through the history of palaeontology, but puts it in the context of society at the time. For example the general appreciation of the dinosaur in the last 150 years has gone from an amazing curiosity, through a symbol of something that was too clumsy to survive, through a metaphor for our own vulnerability to climate change or pollution or nuclear annihilation, to the venerable ancestor of our lovely birds . . . It can be a bit nerdy at times – overly detailed plot lines of particular films or comic books – and can be somewhat repetitive – the same examples cropping up again and again. The sweep of the work references other writers in the field – including Septhen Jay Gould, Donald F. Glut and the above John Noble Wilford – giving a great coverage of the subject

By Allen A. Debus,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Dinosaurs Ever Evolving as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From their discovery in the 19th century to the dawn of the Nuclear Age, dinosaurs were seen in popular culture as ambassadors of the geological past and as icons of the ""life through time"" narrative of evolution. They took on a more foreboding character during the Cold War, serving as a warning to mankind with the advent of the hydrogen bomb. As fears of human extinction escalated during the ecological movement of the 1970s, dinosaurs communicated their metaphorical message of extinction, urging us from our destructive path. Using an eclectic variety of examples, this book outlines the three-fold ""evolution"" of…


Book cover of The Riddle of the Dinosaur

Dougal Dixon Author Of After Man: A Zoology of the Future

From my list on popular depiction of evolution.

Why am I passionate about this?

Dougal Dixon graduated from the University of St. Andrews with two degrees in geology. But although his education was entirely scientific his background was deeply artistic – a potentially unemployable combination back in the ‘70s. And so he ended up in publishing, as the Earth Science editor for an illustrated encyclopedia publisher. Since then he has become a full-time writer, specializing in geological articles for encyclopedias, handbooks on fossil collecting, and principally children’s books on dinosaurs. As well as that he has done a number of books on speculative evolution – exploring the principles of biology in novel ways.

Dougal's book list on popular depiction of evolution

Dougal Dixon Why did Dougal love this book?

We can be a bit precious about all this. But it is important to keep in mind that we have not always known as much as we do now about the history of life on earth. Wilford gives us a very readable account of the practical history of palaeontology - the people involved, the excitement of the discoveries, the anecdotes of the expeditions, the thought processes that went into the interpretations . . . And how the public have percieved the various discoveries throughout history.

By John Noble Wilford,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Riddle of the Dinosaur as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Sketches the history of paleontology, traces the study of dinosaurs, and summarizes what we have learned about their lives and the reason for their extinction


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in dinosaurs, paleontology, and fossils?

10,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about dinosaurs, paleontology, and fossils.

Dinosaurs Explore 91 books about dinosaurs
Paleontology Explore 31 books about paleontology
Fossils Explore 35 books about fossils