An engaging and lyrical look at the water cycle.

WATER IS WATER

A BOOK ABOUT THE WATER CYCLE

A biracial brother and sister explore the out-of-doors (and a bit of mischief) through the four seasons in this poetic look at the many forms water takes on its trip through its cycle.

The book begins in summer as the siblings catch a turtle in the pond near their home before rain drives them indoors. From drinking a cup of water to watching the steam rise from their hot cocoa, the two notice the water around them, letting the turtle go again under a gorgeous cloud-filled sky before a page turn signals autumn, school, falling leaves and fog. “Rain is rain unless… // on the ground. / Slosh / in galoshes. / Splash to your knees! / Puddles are puddles unless… // puddles freeze. / Glide. / Slide. / Put on the brakes! / Ice is ice unless… // it forms flakes.” Much like Deborah Lee Rose’s illustrations for her Twelve Days books, Chin’s realistic watercolor-and-gouache illustrations offer repeat readers seemingly endless new details, like the brother’s propensity for finding small animals with which to torment his sister. The water cycle’s importance is brought home in the closing pages, snow leading to spring to mud to roots to apples to cider. Backmatter tells more about each step in the cycle, using solid explanations and science vocabulary.

An engaging and lyrical look at the water cycle. (water facts, further reading, bibliography) (Informational picture book. 6-10)

Pub Date: May 26, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-59643-984-9

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Neal Porter/Roaring Brook

Review Posted Online: Feb. 3, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2015

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Adventure, humor, and smart, likable characters make for a winning chapter book.

ADA TWIST AND THE PERILOUS PANTS

From the Questioneers series , Vol. 2

Ada Twist’s incessant stream of questions leads to answers that help solve a neighborhood crisis.

Ada conducts experiments at home to answer questions such as, why does Mom’s coffee smell stronger than Dad’s coffee? Each answer leads to another question, another hypothesis, and another experiment, which is how she goes from collecting data on backyard birds for a citizen-science project to helping Rosie Revere figure out how to get her uncle Ned down from the sky, where his helium-filled “perilous pants” are keeping him afloat. The Questioneers—Rosie the engineer, Iggy Peck the architect, and Ada the scientist—work together, asking questions like scientists. Armed with knowledge (of molecules and air pressure, force and temperature) but more importantly, with curiosity, Ada works out a solution. Ada is a recognizable, three-dimensional girl in this delightfully silly chapter book: tirelessly curious and determined yet easily excited and still learning to express herself. If science concepts aren’t completely clear in this romp, relationships and emotions certainly are. In playful full- and half-page illustrations that break up the text, Ada is black with Afro-textured hair; Rosie and Iggy are white. A closing section on citizen science may inspire readers to get involved in science too; on the other hand, the “Ode to a Gas!” may just puzzle them. Other backmatter topics include the importance of bird study and the threat palm-oil use poses to rainforests.

Adventure, humor, and smart, likable characters make for a winning chapter book. (Fiction. 6-9)

Pub Date: April 16, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-4197-3422-9

Page Count: 144

Publisher: Amulet/Abrams

Review Posted Online: Jan. 28, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2019

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A lighthearted read that will offer comfort to young children that others too face challenges of friendship, teamwork and...

PARKER BELL AND THE SCIENCE OF FRIENDSHIP

In her debut chapter book, Platt shares the story of a young girl navigating friendships and the challenges of trying to win her school’s science triathlon.

Young Parker Bell is a curious child who loves science and aspires to match up to Mae Jemison and Jane Goodall one day. Her best friend and partner in science is coding whiz Cassie Malouf. They have been best friends since kindergarten, but Parker gets jealous when Cassie suddenly starts becoming friendly with Theo Zachary, a shy boy in their class. Parker worries that Cassie likes Theo more than her, and she fights hard to keep her friend. Matters only get worse when Cassie invites Theo to be part of their team for the science triathlon, which features a science trivia contest, an egg drop, and a presentation. In a somewhat predictable plot, Parker realizes she has a lot in common with Theo as she spends more time with him. Platt works hard to defy gender stereotypes. In addition to the girls’ STEM enthusiasm, Parker’s mom teaches phys ed, her dad owns a bakery, and Cassie’s mom teaches math. Zhai’s simple black-and-white illustrations of Parker, Cassie, and the classrooms provide a good visual aid to the story, depicting Parker and Theo as white and Cassie with dark skin and long black hair.

A lighthearted read that will offer comfort to young children that others too face challenges of friendship, teamwork and competition. (Fiction. 6-10)

Pub Date: May 21, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-328-97347-4

Page Count: 160

Publisher: Clarion Books

Review Posted Online: Feb. 17, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2019

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