A lively and informal look at the young Beatles.

THE BEATLES

ALL OUR YESTERDAYS

From the Campfire Classics series

This introduction to the Beatles during their formative years in the late 1950s and early ’60s reveals their struggle to reach “the toppermost of the poppermost” of the rock-music world.

Multiframe illustrations and colloquial dialogue boxes visually and verbally trace Lennon, McCartney, Harrison, and Starr from their births during World War II through the release of their first hit record in 1962. While the text relies primarily on imaginary dialogue, events described in the narration are “based on facts taken from published sources.” Quinn shows the impact of Elvis Presley and other rock ’n’ roll stars on Lennon, McCartney, and Harrison as they come of age in post-war Liverpool, form the Quarrymen, change their name to the Beatles, spend time in Hamburg, and return home to adopt trademark haircuts and suits, compose seriously, add Starr as drummer, and emerge on the world scene. With its strong, action-packed images and varied panel sizes, the graphic format allows a cinematic peek at the Beatles, although early rock ’n’ roll references, Liverpool slang, and stylized renderings of the iconic four could prove challenging for contemporary readers.

A lively and informal look at the young Beatles. (Beatles facts) (Graphic biography. 10-14)

Pub Date: Feb. 7, 2017

ISBN: 978-93-81182-22-2

Page Count: 150

Publisher: Campfire

Review Posted Online: Oct. 19, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2016

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Give this a pass: much clearer pictures of what DNA does and the strong personalities who were involved in winkling out its...

THEY CHANGED THE WORLD

CRICK & WATSON—THE DISCOVERY OF DNA

From the Campfire Heroes series

The story of the discovery of the structure of DNA, in graphic format.

Failing to take advantage of either the format or the historic search’s drama, this rendition presents a portentous account heavy on explication and melodramatic rhetoric and featuring a cast of grimacing or pinched-looking figures spouting wooden dialogue. Watson: “So if we combine our research with Rosalind’s data and…” Crick: “And Linus’s approach of building models. We might be able to figure this out.” Helfand diffuses the focus by paying nearly as much attention to the childhoods and early careers of Linus Pauling, Maurice Wilkins, and Rosalind Franklin as he does to Watson and Crick but downplays the rivalries that drove the race. Also, for all the technical detail he injects (“the phosphates would have to be on the outside”) and further explanations in the back, readers will be left in the dark about the role of genes, how DNA actually works, or even the significance of its double helix structure. A closing note about the contributions of Indian-born Nobelist Har Gobind Khorana adds a note of diversity to the all-white cast.

Give this a pass: much clearer pictures of what DNA does and the strong personalities who were involved in winkling out its secrets are available. (Graphic nonfiction. 11-13)

Pub Date: Aug. 16, 2016

ISBN: 978-93-81182-21-5

Page Count: 92

Publisher: Campfire

Review Posted Online: June 22, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2016

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It’s a lot to take in at one sitting, but this anatomical extravaganza really gets to the heart of the matter. Not to...

HUMAN BODY THEATER

A theatrical introduction to human anatomy, as well-choreographed as it is informative.

In 11 “Acts” hosted con brio by a skeletal impresario (“Bring out the lungs!”), Wicks parades a revue of body systems across a curtained stage. It’s a full program, with a teeming supporting cast from Dopamine to Diaphragm, Golgi Body to Gastroenteritis joining more-familiar headliners. The presentation opens with a zoom down to the cellular and even molecular levels to lay foundations for later macro and micro views of digestion, infection, and disease. Following this, the five senses (only five), the “dance of the oxygen fairies,” allergic reactions, and other anatomical processes that make up each system’s major components, most sporting cheery emoji-style faces, expressively demonstrate their respective functions. The reproductive system’s named parts deliver a frank but visually discreet turn with descriptions of erections and fertilization but no direct depictions, and it stops with the onset of puberty. The performances are enhanced by labeled diagrams, pitches on relevant topics from the importance of immunization and proper nutrition to synonyms for “fart,” and lists of important words and further resources. A few miscues aside (no, the speed of sound is not invariant), it’s a grand show, with a logically placed intermission following a peek into the bladder and a literal “wrap” at the end as the emcee puts herself together from inside out.

It’s a lot to take in at one sitting, but this anatomical extravaganza really gets to the heart of the matter. Not to mention the guts, nerves, veins, bones…. (glossary, bibliography) (Graphic nonfiction. 12-14)

Pub Date: Oct. 6, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-62672-277-4

Page Count: 240

Publisher: First Second

Review Posted Online: July 22, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2015

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