A deeply felt but not overwrought telling of a story that will be new to most young readers.

SEVEN AND A HALF TONS OF STEEL

A reverent account of the creation of a seagoing 9/11 memorial fashioned by incorporating part of one of the fallen towers into the hull of a Navy ship.

Following a wordless, powerful sequence in which a seemingly ordinary jet flies peacefully through a cloudless sky and then directly into a tower, Nolan opens by noting that there is “something different, something special” about the seemingly ordinary USS New York. In the tragedy’s aftermath, she explains, a steel beam was pulled from the wreckage and sent to a foundry in Louisiana. There, workers melted it down, recast and shaped it, and sent it to New Orleans, where, notwithstanding the destruction wrought by Hurricane Katrina, it was incorporated into the bow of a new ship of war. Gonzalez echoes the author’s somber, serious tone with dark scenes of ground zero, workers with shadowed faces, and views of the ship from low angles to accentuate its monumental bulk. Though Nolan goes light on names and dates, she adds a significant bit of background to the overall story of 9/11 and its enduring effects. Backmatter includes a cutaway diagram and some additional facts.

A deeply felt but not overwrought telling of a story that will be new to most young readers. (Informational picture book. 7-9)

Pub Date: Aug. 1, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-56145-912-4

Page Count: 36

Publisher: Peachtree

Review Posted Online: May 18, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2016

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Not just for dog lovers, this intro to hero canines is a breed unto itself.

SUPERPOWER DOGS

Published to coincide with the release of the IMAX film of the same name, the book spotlights six dog heroes as they each engage in acts of heroism.

Like something out of an episode of Wild Kratts, the book repeatedly labels various dog breeds’ natural abilities as their “superpowers,” whether it’s the great stamina and supersensitive nose of a Dutch shepherd that sniffs out disaster survivors or the webbed toes of a Newfoundland that saves people from the sea. The book broadens its focus from dogs that save lives to include crime fighters (like the bloodhounds that track poachers in Kenya) and dogs that “help people heal,” like Ricochet, an emotional-support golden retriever. The spare text transitions readers smoothly from dog to dog, retaining interest through crisp photography. Paragraphs of brief, engaging text are highlighted against colored borders, giving the overall design a clear, concise look. Details about dog breeds, abilities, defined terms, and locations appear as bullet points inset where appropriate. Backmatter is limited to a list of dog breeds formatted as trading cards, with “personality,” “superpowers,” and “ideal jobs” specified. The authors eschew further reading or internet resources in lieu of a plug for their IMAX film and website.

Not just for dog lovers, this intro to hero canines is a breed unto itself. (Informational picture book. 7-9)

Pub Date: March 5, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-316-45359-2

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Little, Brown

Review Posted Online: Jan. 28, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2019

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Skips a few stops but should leave young tourists with a taste for further outings into their innards.

A JOURNEY THROUGH THE HUMAN BODY

Even the broccoli and green peas sport happy smiles on their ways down the hatch in this effervescent tour of human body systems.

Veteran science writer Parker thoroughly digests the content of his many previous anatomical itineraries into a set of overviews. They begin with comments about body types and diversity, end with developmental snapshots from infant to pregnant mom, and in between look at how breathing, circulation, movement, digestion, and the (main) senses work, plus a plea for proper nutrition. But though he stirs mentions of many details into his smooth patter, he leaves a lot out of the picture: tendons, ligaments, cell biology, reproduction, hormones, immunity, and disease, for instance. He also tends to underestimate his audience, noting that we breathe “something called oxygen” and we smell “tiny specks of smell substances.” Similarly, Haslam’s bright and simple, high-energy, inside-and-outside cartoon body views keep the show rolling, but the large intestine fades away rather than ending in an anus, and the unlabeled tube below the bladder on the next spread runs disingenuously off the edge of the page. Still, attentive readers will get a gander at most of the main attractions and should do well on the two pop quizzes at the end and enjoy as a memento a dust jacket that unfolds into a colorful poster.

Skips a few stops but should leave young tourists with a taste for further outings into their innards. (Nonfiction. 7-9)

Pub Date: Dec. 1, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-60992-827-8

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Quarto

Review Posted Online: Sept. 16, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2015

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