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REWILDING

GIVING NATURE A SECOND CHANCE

Clearly organized and accessibly written, this is a welcome overview.

From reintroducing keystone species and making wildlife corridors to sharing city space and engineering de-extinction, people are working to rethink the relationship between humans and the natural world.

This evenhanded introduction to the concept of rewilding is lavishly illustrated with stock photographs breaking up the text and adding appeal for middle-grade and middle school readers. Topics are covered each to a double-page spread, presenting first rationale and definitions (rewilding, cores, corridors, and keystone species) and then examples from around the world, both species- and place-specific. The authors, Canadian sisters with a long track record of successful books about the natural world, write with an immediacy that will appeal to nature-loving readers, who will learn about efforts to restore habitats and repopulate them with native species. They discuss animals from trumpeter swans and American eels to butterflies and jaguars. There are success stories: peregrine falcons, back from the brink of extinction, live on city skyscrapers alongside humans; some commercial cod fishing has returned to Newfoundland. There are problems: no one has yet discovered where eels spawn; there isn’t enough room in a Netherlands wetland for the keystone species that would keep introduced herbivores in check. And there are interesting new wild spaces: the High Line in New York City; the demilitarized zone between the Koreas.

Clearly organized and accessibly written, this is a welcome overview. (glossary, sources, further reading, photo credits, index) (Nonfiction. 10-14)

Pub Date: Oct. 10, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-55451-962-0

Page Count: 88

Publisher: Annick Press

Review Posted Online: Aug. 26, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2017

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ISAAC NEWTON

From the Giants of Science series

Hot on the heels of the well-received Leonardo da Vinci (2005) comes another agreeably chatty entry in the Giants of Science series. Here the pioneering physicist is revealed as undeniably brilliant, but also cantankerous, mean-spirited, paranoid and possibly depressive. Newton’s youth and annus mirabilis receive respectful treatment, the solitude enforced by family estrangement and then the plague seen as critical to the development of his thoughtful, methodical approach. His subsequent squabbles with the rest of the scientific community—he refrained from publishing one treatise until his rival was dead—further support the image of Newton as a scientific lone wolf. Krull’s colloquial treatment sketches Newton’s advances in clearly understandable terms without bogging the text down with detailed explanations. A final chapter on “His Impact” places him squarely in the pantheon of great thinkers, arguing that both his insistence on the scientific method and his theories of physics have informed all subsequent scientific thought. A bibliography, web site and index round out the volume; the lack of detail on the use of sources is regrettable in an otherwise solid offering for middle-grade students. (Biography. 10-14)

Pub Date: April 1, 2006

ISBN: 0-670-05921-8

Page Count: 128

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: June 24, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2006

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WICKED BUGS

THE MEANEST, DEADLIEST, GROSSEST BUGS ON EARTH

Entomophobes will find all of this horrifyingly informative.

This junior edition of Stewart’s lurid 2011 portrait gallery of the same name (though much less gleeful subtitle) loses none of its capacity for leaving readers squicked-out.

The author drops a few entries, notably the one on insect sexual practices, and rearranges toned-down versions of the rest into roughly topical sections. Beginning with the same cogent observation—“We are seriously outnumbered”—she follows general practice in thrillers of this ilk by defining “bug” broadly enough to include all-too-detailed descriptions of the life cycles and revolting or deadly effects of scorpions and spiders, ticks, lice, and, in a chapter evocatively titled “The Enemy Within,” such internal guests as guinea worms and tapeworms. Mosquitoes, bedbugs, the ubiquitous “Filth Fly,” and like usual suspects mingle with more-exotic threats, from the tongue-eating louse and a “yak-killer hornet” (just imagine) to the aggressive screw-worm fly that, in one cited case, flew up a man’s nose and laid hundreds of eggs…that…hatched. Morrow-Cribbs’ close-up full-color drawings don’t offer the visceral thrills of the photos in, for instance, Rebecca L. Johnson’s Zombie Makers (2012) but are accurate and finely detailed enough to please even the fussiest young entomologists.

Entomophobes will find all of this horrifyingly informative. (index, glossary, resource lists) (Nonfiction. 11-14)

Pub Date: Aug. 8, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-61620-755-7

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Algonquin

Review Posted Online: June 26, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2017

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