Kirkus Reviews QR Code


50 Formulas that Fizz, Foam, Splatter & Ooze

by Joe Rhatigan, Veronika Alice Gunter, illustrated by Tom LaBaff

Age Range: 10 - 14

Pub Date: May 13th, 2005
ISBN: 1-57990-620-6
Publisher: Sterling

Here are experiments one hopes children will practice at someone else’s house. Even with clearly laid out Lab Rules—“Clean all your materials after you use them” and “Never pour a polymer or slime concoction down a drain”—there are bound to be some messy mishaps. “Soda slobber” creates great gobs of cola foam that “bubble up and out and all over the place.” “Bubbles that Bounce,” made with syrup, will leave a sticky reminder wherever they pop. And a chemistry-enhanced “Water Bomb,” made with vinegar, baking soda and a zip-lock sandwich bag could be painful if mishandled. It’s not enough to say in the text, “Don’t get the concoction in your eyes,” when the accompanying drawing shows the exploded bomb drenching an unsuspecting teen who was quietly reading. Despite these concerns, these experiments make chemistry interesting and fun and there are some neat recipes for making polymers like “Snot for Everyone,” made with gelatin, “Moo-vable Milk,” made with vinegar and milk, and “Clean Green Slime,” made with white glue and borax. Illustrations throughout are colorful and humorous, but all practitioners should be shown wearing safety goggles and gloves. Recommended with reservations. (glossary, index) (Nonfiction. 10-14)