FLUSH! by Charise Mericle Harper


The Scoop on Poop Throughout the Ages
Age Range: 6 - 10
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“What, you ask, is a chamber pot? / Well, here are things that it is not. / It’s not a pot to keep your money, / pretty flowers, toys, or honey.” Delivering juicy nuggets of cultural and historical information, both in fluent verse and in running prose commentary, this child-riveting study wipes Nicola A. Davies’s The Truth about Poop, illus by Elwood H. Smith (2004), off the map. Harper opens with a tally of the uses to which urine has been put worldwide (surrounded by “Don’t try this at home” warnings), closes with a rousing, gleefully repetitive paean to poop and spreads piquant observations on toilet paper’s predecessors, waste disposal through history and like topics in between. She illustrates it all with discreetly posed, Maira Kalman–style figures rendered in decidedly un-sludgy colors. Young listeners plunging into this savory survey will come away with tasty new words like “gongfermor” and “garderobe,” plenty of eminently share-worthy facts (Rome’s Cloaca Maxima is 16 feet wide, which is “43 sandwiches long / if you lay them side by side”) and sore cheeks—the facial sort—from laughing. (Picture book/poetry/nonfiction. 6-10)

Pub Date: March 1st, 2007
ISBN: 0-316-01064-2
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Little, Brown
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15th, 2007


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