FROM HEAD TO TOE

THE AMAZING HUMAN BODY AND HOW IT WORKS

The illustrator of many “Let’s Read And Find Out” science titles supplies characteristically flat, simplified, lighthearted (so to speak) diagrams for Seuling’s (Robert and the Weird and Wacky Facts, p. 426, etc.) tour of the body’s major components. Aiming at young children who are just beginning to wonder what’s inside, she introduces bones, muscles, organs, and senses in digestible, largely self-contained bursts of information—labeling the trachea, pancreas, occipitofrontalis muscle, and other selected items for readers who relish mouth-filling scientific terms. Though glancing barely, if at all, at the endocrine system, disease, physical development, or sex, she does close with a look at the body’s repair mechanisms that leads to a discussion of the past and future of artificial body parts. Enhanced by directions for several simple models or demonstrations, some experiments, plus more of the same on the illustrator’s Web site, this once-over conveys a clear sense of the body’s complexity without losing sight of the big picture. (Picture book/nonfiction. 6-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 15, 2002

ISBN: 0-8234-1699-2

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Holiday House

Review Posted Online: June 24, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2002

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“It’s time to head back home,” the narrator concludes. “You’ve touched the Earth in so many ways.” Who knew it would be so...

TOUCH THE EARTH

From the Julian Lennon White Feather Flier Adventure series , Vol. 1

A pro bono Twinkie of a book invites readers to fly off in a magic plane to bring clean water to our planet’s oceans, deserts, and brown children.

Following a confusingly phrased suggestion beneath a soft-focus world map to “touch the Earth. Now touch where you live,” a shake of the volume transforms it into a plane with eyes and feathered wings that flies with the press of a flat, gray “button” painted onto the page. Pressing like buttons along the journey releases a gush of fresh water from the ground—and later, illogically, provides a filtration device that changes water “from yucky to clean”—for thirsty groups of smiling, brown-skinned people. At other stops, a tap on the button will “help irrigate the desert,” and touching floating bottles and other debris in the ocean supposedly makes it all disappear so the fish can return. The 20 children Coh places on a globe toward the end are varied of skin tone, but three of the four young saviors she plants in the flier’s cockpit as audience stand-ins are white. The closing poem isn’t so openly parochial, though it seldom rises above vague feel-good sentiments: “Love the Earth, the moon and sun. / All the children can be one.”

“It’s time to head back home,” the narrator concludes. “You’ve touched the Earth in so many ways.” Who knew it would be so easy to clean the place up and give everyone a drink? (Picture book. 6-8)

Pub Date: April 11, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-5107-2083-1

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Sky Pony Press

Review Posted Online: Feb. 4, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2017

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THE PUMPKIN BOOK

The Pumpkin Book (32 pp.; $16.95; Sept. 15; 0-8234-1465-5): From seed to vine and blossom to table, Gibbons traces the growth cycle of everyone’s favorite autumn symbol—the pumpkin. Meticulous drawings detail the transformation of tiny seeds to the colorful gourds that appear at roadside stands and stores in the fall. Directions for planting a pumpkin patch, carving a jack-o’-lantern, and drying the seeds give young gardeners the instructions they need to grow and enjoy their own golden globes. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 15, 1999

ISBN: 0-8234-1465-5

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Holiday House

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 1999

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