A wide-angled survey of the hot new field of “glacial archeology.” (timeline, resource list, index) (Nonfiction. 8-11)

OUT OF THE ICE

HOW CLIMATE CHANGE IS REVEALING THE PAST

Recent revelations from our planet’s shrinking “cryosphere.”

Preserved in ice or permafrost like “the veggies in a kitchen freezer,” artifacts and bodies both human and animal are now being discovered at an increasingly rapid pace in many parts of the world. With particular attention to finds in northern Canada and, more broadly, the northern region known as Beringia, Eamer highlights their variety—from cave lion cubs, woolly mammoths, and rotting 2,400-year-old caribou poop to a moccasin “worn and lost 1300 years ago” and an entire passenger plane that went down in Alaska in 1952 but has only since 2012 begun emerging from a receding glacier. Many of these are both chance discoveries and ephemeral, but they offer unique information about ancient times and our own histories. For human remains she includes descriptions of Ötzi (the “Iceman”) and Scythian kurgan burials in the Altai Mountains among others but devotes particular attention to Kwäday Dän Ts’ìnchi, a 200- to 300-year-old Indigenous teen found in northern Canada with, according to DNA analysis, 17 living relatives. Shannon fills in the sparse assortment of photographed artifacts and bodies with rough, generic paintings, mostly reconstructions of prehistoric scenes or images of wildlife and of researchers at work. The rare human figures visible in the painted art are nearly all light-skinned.

A wide-angled survey of the hot new field of “glacial archeology.” (timeline, resource list, index) (Nonfiction. 8-11)

Pub Date: Sept. 4, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-77138-731-6

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Kids Can

Review Posted Online: June 25, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2018

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Friends of these pollinators will be best served elsewhere.

1001 BEES

This book is buzzing with trivia.

Follow a swarm of bees as they leave a beekeeper’s apiary in search of a new home. As the scout bees traverse the fields, readers are provided with a potpourri of facts and statements about bees. The information is scattered—much like the scout bees—and as a result, both the nominal plot and informational content are tissue-thin. There are some interesting facts throughout the book, but many pieces of trivia are too, well trivial, to prove useful. For example, as the bees travel, readers learn that “onion flowers are round and fluffy” and “fennel is a plant that is used in cooking.” Other facts are oversimplified and as a result are not accurate. For example, monofloral honey is defined as “made by bees who visit just one kind of flower” with no acknowledgment of the fact that bees may range widely, and swarm activity is described as a springtime event, when it can also occur in summer and early fall. The information in the book, such as species identification and measurement units, is directed toward British readers. The flat, thin-lined artwork does little to enhance the story, but an “I spy” game challenging readers to find a specific bee throughout is amusing.

Friends of these pollinators will be best served elsewhere. (Informational picture book. 8-10)

Pub Date: May 18, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-500-65265-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Thames & Hudson

Review Posted Online: April 14, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2021

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A stimulating outing to the furthest reaches of our knowledge, certain to inspire deep thoughts.

YOUR PLACE IN THE UNIVERSE

From a Caldecott and Sibert honoree, an invitation to take a mind-expanding journey from the surface of our planet to the furthest reaches of the observable cosmos.

Though Chin’s assumption that we are even capable of understanding the scope of the universe is quixotic at best, he does effectively lead viewers on a journey that captures a sense of its scale. Following the model of Kees Boeke’s classic Cosmic View: The Universe in Forty Jumps (1957), he starts with four 8-year-old sky watchers of average height (and different racial presentations). They peer into a telescope and then are comically startled by the sudden arrival of an ostrich that is twice as tall…and then a giraffe that is over twice as tall as that…and going onward and upward, with ellipses at each page turn connecting the stages, past our atmosphere and solar system to the cosmic web of galactic superclusters. As he goes, precisely drawn earthly figures and features in the expansive illustrations give way to ever smaller celestial bodies and finally to glimmering swirls of distant lights against gulfs of deep black before ultimately returning to his starting place. A closing recap adds smaller images and additional details. Accompanying the spare narrative, valuable side notes supply specific lengths or distances and define their units of measure, accurately explain astronomical phenomena, and close with the provocative observation that “the observable universe is centered on us, but we are not in the center of the entire universe.”

A stimulating outing to the furthest reaches of our knowledge, certain to inspire deep thoughts. (afterword, websites, further reading) (Informational picture book. 8-10)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-8234-4623-0

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Neal Porter/Holiday House

Review Posted Online: April 12, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2020

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