THE FIRE BUG CONNECTION by Jean Craighead George

THE FIRE BUG CONNECTION

An Ecological Mystery
Age Range: 9 - 12

KIRKUS REVIEW

Sensibly omitting the kind of human drama that encumbered The Missing 'Gator of Gumbo Limbo' (1992), a fine author focuses again on the careful observation of nature. George's novelistic talents aren't wasted--she brings backwoods Maine, where some professor/environmentalists are enjoying a working summer with two of their kids, efficiently to life, while Mitch, 10, a resourceful computer maven, and thoughtful young naturalist Maggie, 12, are refreshingly individual. Both deeply curious about living things, they also have a rare ability to make connections and devise properly controlled experiments. Maggie's already observing bats in her bedroom, spiders, a Sphex ichneumoneus, and other wildlife when a Czech visitor presents her with some "fire bugs," allowed through customs because they are known not to survive in New England; by the end, through experiment, deduction, and computer access to databases, the kids know why--an elegant bit of original research that's respectfully greeted by the adults as a key to discovering natural pesticides. The intellectual enthusiasm here is wonderfully contagious, while the superbly detailed natural history is not just intrinsic to the story: it is the story. Thus, it's too bad there aren't illustrations of the species mentioned, and--in the context of such authoritative science--a note discussing what's fictional and what isn't. Otherwise: fascinating and (especially for budding naturalists) inspiring. (Fiction. 9-12)

Pub Date: May 30th, 1993
ISBN: 0-06-021490-2
Page count: 148pp
Publisher: HarperCollins
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1st, 1993




JEAN CRAIGHEAD GEORGE, 1919-2012:

Children THE BUFFALO ARE BACK by Jean Craighead George
by Jean Craighead George
Adult SNOW BEAR by Jean Craighead George
by Jean Craighead George
Adult MORNING, NOON, AND NIGHT by Jean Craighead George
by Jean Craighead George
Children THE MISSING 'GATOR OF GUMBO LIMBO by Jean Craighead George
by Jean Craighead George

MORE BY JEAN CRAIGHEAD GEORGE

ChildrenGALÁPAGOS GEORGE by Jean Craighead George
by Jean Craighead George
ChildrenICE WHALE by Jean Craighead George
by Jean Craighead George
ChildrenA SPECIAL GIFT FOR GRAMMY by Jean Craighead George
by Jean Craighead George