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From the Want to Know series

by Pierre Winters & illustrated by Tineke Meirinck

Age Range: 4 - 8

Pub Date: Dec. 1st, 2012
ISBN: 978-1-60537-137-5
Publisher: Clavis

Everything a youngster might want to know about air travel.

Henry and Kate are going on vacation with their parents. Packed bags close by, they stare excitedly out the window at the airport, waiting for the call to board. A series of two-page spreads charts the history of flight, from Icarus through biplanes to the modern jet, then Winters takes readers onto the plane to check out every part from nose to tail. Another spread depicts one boy's (puzzlingly, not Henry) fascination; he makes a paper airplane and flies a remote-control helicopter before building his own toy plane out of wood and finally piloting a small plane himself. A double-gatefold provides a panoramic view of the airport, illustrating aspects of airport security. Then readers meet the various airport personnel, pictured and described. Henry and Kate hold their boarding passes as they wait in line to get on the plane. All along the way are additional tidbits or reader challenges in little bubbles. Winters closes with a pair of poems about flight and a handful of quizzes (matching pictured baggage to owners, for example) and craft projects, like making a travel notebook. The illustrations look a bit too old-fashioned for the hipness of the text, but it’s still a solid, if busy introduction for new fliers. 

An impressive amount of useful information in an inviting format, studded with humor. (Picture book. 4-8)