A slim guide that aims to equip children with important information about ticks.
Alex wants to play with her friend José, but José is too sick. Her mother explains that José was bitten by a tick, which gave him a disease that made him tired and weak. Alex’s mother pulls out a book called No Ticks Please to explain where ticks hide, how they transmit diseases and how people can avoid them. The book explains that ticks are often found in “woods, bushes, and tall grasses,” and repeats the phrase often to drive the point home for a young audience. Alex also learns that the remarkably tiny ticks hide in warm, moist spaces and seek out the warm bodies of animals, where they live and drink blood: “The warm body can be a mouse, a chipmunk, or other creatures full of mischief and spunk.” The book-within-a-book is written in an awkward meter, with unnecessary rhymes, but it carries an important message: Yes, you can still go on adventures, but you need to be careful. Fox (No Ticks Please, 2011, etc.) manages to explain something that could potentially alarm children—tiny, vampire-like bugs that carry a debilitating disease—in a straightforward, nonfrightening way. She makes it clear how serious Lyme disease and other tick-borne illnesses are, but also shows José visiting the doctor, getting better and going back outside to play again. Seven pages of plain-language tips for avoiding ticks and removing them follow the story, with illustrations of campsites, constructions sites, woodpiles and other tick hangouts that will, hopefully, stick with kids. The book is fully illustrated in color, although the humans come off looking a bit stiff. That said, Seward’s illustrations are realistic enough that kids will be able to recognize hard-to-spot ticks if they happen to see one.
A useful guide to avoiding a dangerous bug.