Hot and heady: an enticing calling card for researchers of tomorrow.

READ REVIEW

BODY 2.0

THE ENGINEERING REVOLUTION IN MEDICINE

A primer on biomedical engineering.

Veteran science author Latta (Zoom in on Mining Robots, 2018, etc.) here spotlights the fascinating convergence of medicine, engineering, and scientific discovery, offering provocative glimpses into the burgeoning fields of tissue engineering, regenerative medicine, neuroscience, microbiology, genetic engineering, and synthetic biology. Inspiring problem-solving–minded teens to explore these STEM disciplines by describing projects so cutting edge they seem like science fiction, Latta also includes brief profiles and photos of diverse researchers that enable readers to imagine themselves pursuing similar careers. Says Dr. Gilda Barabino, “I think there’s a little bit of an engineer in everybody. It’s curiosity! Everybody wants to know how things work.” Areas of potential breakthrough covered include brain-computer interfaces that may one day allow people with paralysis or limited mobility to move their limbs or control a robot helper; editing the human genome to treat chronic diseases like sickle cell disease by removing and replacing damaged DNA; optogenetics, which hopes to combine gene therapy with light to reduce pain and cure blindness; and growing bespoke body parts like bone, skin, arteries, and more in the lab, seeded by one’s own cells and partially crafted by 3-D bioprinters. Full-color diagrams and photos combined with informative text boxes and a lively, conversational style make this an appealing choice.

Hot and heady: an enticing calling card for researchers of tomorrow. (glossary, source notes, bibliography, further information, index, photo credits) (Nonfiction. 13-18)

Pub Date: Nov. 5, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5415-2813-0

Page Count: 96

Publisher: Twenty-First Century/Lerner

Review Posted Online: Aug. 28, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2019

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Despite the author’s fervor, this story ultimately fizzles.

THE BIGGEST EXPLOSIONS IN THE UNIVERSE

A book for young readers about the science of astronomy.

Howard, an aerospace engineer, enthusiastically instructs readers on the intricacies of the stars–the “biggest explosions” of her title. Beginning with a primer on our place in the universe, she then guides readers through the birth of stars, star groupings, dying stars, supernovae, the lifecycle of the sun, “weird, wacky, and mysterious” stars and the most violent outbursts in the universe. Enticed by the explosive title, some readers will be especially interested in the more frightening aspects of our cosmos, and the author satisfies with information about the eventual death of our sun, and black holes. Her stated goal is to demystify the lifecycle and role of stars, and with the help of eye-catching photographs and relatively nontechnical language, she succeeds. However, while Howard’s passion for the subject is certainly evident, her ability to connect with her intended audience is less assured–her nimble command of the subject matter is in stark contrast to the awkward tone of the prose. At times, it doesn’t seem like she’s addressing young readers. She begins her book by instructing her readers to “pile the whole family into your car,” but it’s unlikely the average child reader would be licensed to drive. On one page, Howard give a complicated lesson on calculating the distance to the edges of our solar system in light years–two pages later, she talks about gravity’s effect on “puppy dogs [and] kitty cats.” Stranger still, she anthropomorphizes the objects she submits to scientific rigor. She claims “a star smiles with its light and dances with joy” and that when “baby stars” are born, “they ignite their smiles [and] give off a big cough and blow all the dust and particles far away from themselves.” Treating the stars as entities with discernable lifecycles is one thing, but suggesting that they have emotions is disingenuous.

Despite the author’s fervor, this story ultimately fizzles.

Pub Date: Feb. 18, 2009

ISBN: 978-1-4392-1527-2

Page Count: -

Publisher: N/A

Review Posted Online: May 23, 2010

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Overall, a fascinating, practical read by a knowledgeable author that could have been significantly improved by some...

SELFIE MADE

YOUR ULTIMATE GUIDE TO SOCIAL MEDIA STARDOM

A step-by-step guide to becoming a social media star.

Debut author Rojas draws on her experience as the co-founder and CEO of DigiTour to put together a book of practical advice for teens aspiring to become social media stars. The book lays out concrete steps for doing everything from picking a platform to building a loyal following to monetizing online success. Case studies focus on individual social media celebrities and their paths to stardom, punctuated with lists, photos, questions for reflection, definitions, and, at the end, pages for note-taking. Throughout, Rojas provides opportunity for self-reflection, urging readers to think about what makes them unique, to become creators in their own right, and to seriously consider the downsides of fame. The book’s voice is clear and easy to read, balancing her serious, no-nonsense wisdom with wit and enthusiasm; the stern but nurturing tone makes it clear why social media stars sometimes call her “mom.” The book begins with reminders about basic online netiquette as well as internet safety guidelines. Unfortunately, the majority of social media stars profiled appear to be white, and the book’s references to teen girls lining up to see teen boy stars feel both heteronormative and gendered, not to mention an oversimplification of the complexities of fandom.

Overall, a fascinating, practical read by a knowledgeable author that could have been significantly improved by some attention to diversity. (Nonfiction. 13-18)

Pub Date: Oct. 16, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-250-19674-3

Page Count: 272

Publisher: Wednesday Books

Review Posted Online: June 24, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2018

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more