Skip to main content Skip to search Skip to search

Children's Nonfiction Butterflies, Moths & Caterpillars

Butterflies Are Pretty ... Gross!

by (author) Rosemary Mosco

illustrated by Jacob Souva

Initial publish date
Apr 2021
Butterflies, Moths & Caterpillars, General, General
Recommended Age
4 to 8
Recommended Grade
p to 3
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Apr 2021
    List Price

Classroom Resources

Where to buy it


Warning -- this book contains top-secret information about butterflies! Prepare to be shocked and grossed out by this hilarious and totally true picture book introduction to a fascinating insect.

Butterflies are beautiful and quiet and gentle and sparkly . . . but that's not the whole truth. Butterflies can be GROSS. And one butterfly in particular is here to let everyone know! Talking directly to the reader, a monarch butterfly reveals how its kind is so much more than what we think. Did you know some butterflies enjoy feasting on dead animals, rotten fruit, tears and even poop? Some butterflies are loud, like the Cracker butterfly. Some are stinky -- the smell scares predators away. Butterflies can be sneaky, like the ones who pretend to be ants to get free babysitting.

This hilarious and refreshing book with silly and sweet illustrations explores the science of butterflies and shows that these insects are not the stereotypically cutesy critters we often think they are -- they are fascinating, disgusting, complicated and amazing creatures.

About the authors

Rosemary Mosco is a science communicator, acclaimed cartoonist, and speaker on all things bird. She's the creator of the webcomic Bird and Moon and has authored many science books for young people, including co-authoring the bestselling Atlas Obscura Explorer’s Guide for the World’s Most Adventurous Kid. She lives in Massachusetts.

Rosemary Mosco's profile page

Jacob Souva's profile page


  • Nominated, Shining Willow Award

Editorial Reviews

One of Canadian Children's Book Centre’s Best Books for Kids and Teens, Fall 2021 — Starred Pick
A 2022 Texas Library Association 2x2 Reading List Pick

“A proboscis-in-cheek introduction to butterflies that will appeal to reluctant readers and bug enthusiasts alike.” —STARRED REVIEW, Kirkus Reviews
“Mosco’s written text is informative, playful, and humorous.” —CM Magazine
“Jacob Souva's artwork adds to the hilarity of this resource.” —Library Matters
“Cute, funny, entertaining, and educational, this book will be enjoyed by insect lovers of all ages.” —Calgary Herald

Other titles by

Other titles by