With her own set of superpowers, a mole navigates underground, finding food, escaping predators, raising a family, and aerating and enriching the soil around her.
This introduction to the underground ecosystem starring Mighty Mole also mentions other soil dwellers and visitors. The two-level text includes a simple narrative describing the mole’s customary activities, with a repeated refrain: “Scratch. Push. Scratch. Push.” This is accompanied by a reduced-font paragraph of further information. Both are set on double-page spreads with dramatically lit digital paintings: detailed, oversized close-ups of subterranean animals and the soil that surrounds them and occasional views of the world aboveground, the background fading into a soft-focused distance. Like other nature books produced by this publisher, this valuable title includes several pages of backmatter: further information for readers and teachers about moles and the soil they live in, as well as a quiz. A QR code on the back takes readers to the publisher's website for still more information, including a glossary, and activities. It’s unfortunate that the text labels these earthworm-eaters “insectivores,” defining that word in context as eating “insects, snails, slugs, centipedes, and larvae.” Though this is the term used by biologists, it will likely confuse lay readers.
There are few books available for young readers about these important soil-improvers, so this fills a niche. (Informational picture book. 4-8)