Budding gardeners who love to cook will find a treasure trove of information here.




Hengel encourages middle-grade readers to grow and cook their own food.

A compilation of Hengel’s six books about growing and cooking with basil, carrots, green beans, leaf lettuce, potatoes and tomatoes, the formatted sections make it easy for readers to find the information they need to succeed in both growing and cooking with these foods—though it does also make for some repetition of information. Each section includes spreads about the focus plant and its variations, the conditions it needs and how to sow the seeds, its stages of growth, harvesting the plant and a Q-and-A page. These informational pages are followed by five to six recipes (minus nutritional information and sometimes the colored circles that outline the numbered steps), including Creamy Carrot Soup, Tasty Thai Noodles & Basil, Sassy Citrus Zest Beans, Sort-of Sushi Rolls, Cheddar Potato Cakes and Tomato Pie in the Sky. Three safety symbols used on the recipe pages alert chefs to sharp tools, hot materials and nuts. Extensive frontmatter includes a three-spread pictorial guide to cooking terms, three more spreads featuring an alphabetized pictorial list of ingredients (fish sauce, blue cheese and horseradish among them!), and two spreads of labeled kitchen tools. A URL directs readers to Abdo Publishing’s website for more informational websites (eHow among them) and Burpee’s online seed catalog.

Budding gardeners who love to cook will find a treasure trove of information here. (glossary, index) (Nonfiction. 8-13)

Pub Date: March 20, 2014

ISBN: 978-1-938063-42-8

Page Count: 144

Publisher: Scarletta Press

Review Posted Online: April 9, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2014

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A rich source of terrors both real and manufactured, equally effective in broad daylight or beneath the bedcovers.



A compendium of paranormal doings, natural horrors, and eerie wonders worldwide and (in several senses) beyond.

Maladroit title aside (“…in Bed” would make more sense, cautionwise), this collection of hauntings, cryptids, natural and historical mysteries, and general titillation (“Vampire bats might be coming for you!”) offers a broad array of reasons to stay wide awake. Arranged in no discernible order the 60-plus entries include ghostly sightings in the White House and various castles, body-burrowing guinea worms, the Nazca lines of Peru, Mothman and Nessie, the hastily abandoned city of Pripyat (which, thanks to the Chernobyl disaster, may be habitable again…in 24,000 years), monarch-butterfly migrations, and diverse rains of fish, frogs, fireballs, and unidentified slime. Each is presented in a busy whirl of narrative blocks, photos, graphics, side comments, and arbitrary “Fright-O-Meter” ratings (Paris’ “Creepy Catacombs” earn just a “4” out of 10 and black holes a “3,” but the aforementioned aerial amphibians a full “10”). The headers tend toward the lurid: “Jelly From Space,” “Zombie Ants,” “Mongolian Death Worm.” Claybourne sprinkles multiple-choice pop quizzes throughout for changes of pace.

A rich source of terrors both real and manufactured, equally effective in broad daylight or beneath the bedcovers. (Nonfiction. 9-12)

Pub Date: Aug. 1, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-4263-2841-1

Page Count: 144

Publisher: National Geographic

Review Posted Online: May 15, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2017

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In a large, handsome format, Tarnowska offers six tales plus an abbreviated version of the frame story, retold in formal but contemporary language and sandwiched between a note on the Nights’ place in her childhood in Lebanon and a page of glossary and source notes. Rather than preserve the traditional embedded structure and cliffhanger cutoffs, she keeps each story discrete and tones down the sex and violence. This structure begs the question of why Shahriyar lets Shahrazade [sic] live if she tells each evening’s tale complete, but it serves to simplify the reading for those who want just one tale at a time. Only the opener, “Aladdin and the Wonderful Lamp,” is likely to be familiar to young readers; in others a prince learns to control a flying “Ebony Horse” by “twiddling” its ears, contending djinn argue whether “Prince Kamar el Zaman [or] Princess Boudour” is the more beautiful (the prince wins) and in a Cinderella tale a “Diamond Anklet” subs for the glass slipper. Hénaff’s stylized scenes of domed cityscapes and turbaned figures add properly whimsical visual notes to this short but animated gathering. (Folktales. 10-12)


Pub Date: Dec. 1, 2010

ISBN: 978-1-84686-122-2

Page Count: 128

Publisher: Barefoot

Review Posted Online: Dec. 22, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15, 2010

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