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A colorful, uneven introduction to the workings of the human body--with some examples that may turn parents and other involved adults off. Bodies are compared to machines (they require fuel to run), and conception and development are likened to ""a unique assembly line programmed by the genes, the units of heredity."" A section called ""Nuts and Bolts' explains the machine's basic operations: skin, muscles, body systems, and their workings. ""Nuts and Bolts in Action"" describes how the systems are integrated and work together to produce function. (""Oxygen explodes with glucose in the muscle cells to produce energy, which powers the muscles."") ""How You See the World"" tackles more difficult topics such as memory, learning, and emotions--and here some peculiar examples have been included. (""Charles Manson is in prison for murder. Doctors say he is a psychopath. Psychopaths tend to react angrily toward discipline and are cruel to children and animals."") Here and elsewhere, also, oversimplification has led to inaccuracy: muscles can not turn to fat; there are more than ""two types of sleep: deep sleep and dream sleep."" A final note on ""Keeping Fit"" offers basic advice on healthy living habits, and a few observations on going to the hospital (which may be necessary when ""a part of your body machine needs to be fixed""). Notwithstanding Barnard's notoriety, dispensable.

Pub Date: Feb. 3rd, 1984
Publisher: Crown