Picture Book Review: If DaVinci Painted a Dinosaur

If da Vinci Painted a Dinosaur by Amy Newbold
If da Vinci Painted a Dinosaur 
by Amy Newbold (Author), Greg Newbold (Illustrations)

4 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


This hilarious book poses the question, What would it look like if various famous artists had painted dinosaurs? The results are dancing ballerina dinosaurs in the style of Degas, Dino Noodle Soup a la Andy Warhol, a Frida Kahlo dinosaur, dinos in Mary Cassatt’s garden, jazz band dinosaurs in Aaron Douglas’ style, and of course, the incomparable Dino Mona Lisa!

Throughout the story, a little hamster/gerbil artist appears on each page with a paintbrush, chalk, crayon, or scissors in hand… um… paw. He guides us through the various art styles, and discovers a new friend at the end of the book. His expressions are so cute, and he adds a little flair to the story!

There is a page at the end with the outline of an artist’s easel where the reader can color their own artistic creation! It’s little extras like that which make this book so special.

I really enjoyed looking through all the different art styles, and searching for details similar to the original famous paintings. It’s really very clever to see how they have added volcanoes and Jurassic flora and fauna to the paintings. It made me laugh to see some of those funny details in the background!

At the end of the book, there are small one-paragraph bios of the different artists whose works are imitated. But I wish that the explanations of the different artists would include a small thumbnail of the original work of art, so that I could compare it to the dino version. I was also a little disappointed that most of the artists featured are modern artists, and the only classical artist mentioned is da Vinci. I wish there were a larger diversity in the eras of art represented. Still, it’s a great way to learn about many different artists.

This is such an enjoyable book to read with children, and a delight to read aloud!

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the author/publisher in exchange for a free and honest review. All the opinions stated here are my own true thoughts, and are not influenced by anyone.

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