Rating: Significant Shortcomings
Reading/Interest Level: Primary
Author: Tony Ross
Illustrator: Tony Ross
Publisher: Andersen Press USA
An Anty-War Story describes Antworld, a place busy with ants gathering food and being productive for the community. One ant by the name of Douglas also wants to help Antworld, but the leaders have other plans for him. Instead of being a gatherer, Douglas will be trained to be a soldier to fight in the war. A war breaks out and Douglas dies, but he is remembered by having his name honored on the ant memorial.
This picture book is extremely confusing and lacks development for both plot and characters. For example, the book says that Douglas is the only ant that has a name. It never explains why Douglas is the sole named creature throughout the book. Additionally, when the war breaks out, it is not between ants as it would seem from the training scenes, but between humans. The book does not explain why the ants were involved in this war or if they were innocent bystanders. Being that they were preparing for a war of their own, it is shocking to see the humans suddenly enter the story. The purpose of this book may be to show that there are unanticipated causalities during war, but it is very poorly done.