LUNGS

YOUR RESPIRATORY SYSTEM

In straightforward text, a veteran science writer describes the system that makes it possible to inhale and exhale more than 20,000 times a day. Beginning with a quick explanation of the air around us, Simon goes on to describe its journey through your nose, pharynx, trachea and bronchi, and the subsequent movement of its oxygen into the blood. Other topics include lung movement, yawns, snores and sneezes, as well as respiratory problems and their detection. While the text is clear and the information appropriate, middle-grade readers may find some illustrations—brightly colored diagrams, computer-enhanced X-rays and other images—confusing. Not all full-page images are labeled; only a careful look at the index will reveal the point. In one, opposite the page explaining the difference in left and right lung sizes, only the left lung is visible in most lights. The “damaged lungs of a smoker” are horrific, but there is no similar image for comparison. Part of a long-standing and popular science series, however, this will be welcome in classrooms. (index, glossary, suggested reading, websites) (Nonfiction. 8-11)

Pub Date: March 1, 2007

ISBN: 0-06-054654-9

Page Count: 32

Publisher: HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2007

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Friends of these pollinators will be best served elsewhere.

1001 BEES

This book is buzzing with trivia.

Follow a swarm of bees as they leave a beekeeper’s apiary in search of a new home. As the scout bees traverse the fields, readers are provided with a potpourri of facts and statements about bees. The information is scattered—much like the scout bees—and as a result, both the nominal plot and informational content are tissue-thin. There are some interesting facts throughout the book, but many pieces of trivia are too, well trivial, to prove useful. For example, as the bees travel, readers learn that “onion flowers are round and fluffy” and “fennel is a plant that is used in cooking.” Other facts are oversimplified and as a result are not accurate. For example, monofloral honey is defined as “made by bees who visit just one kind of flower” with no acknowledgment of the fact that bees may range widely, and swarm activity is described as a springtime event, when it can also occur in summer and early fall. The information in the book, such as species identification and measurement units, is directed toward British readers. The flat, thin-lined artwork does little to enhance the story, but an “I spy” game challenging readers to find a specific bee throughout is amusing.

Friends of these pollinators will be best served elsewhere. (Informational picture book. 8-10)

Pub Date: May 18, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-500-65265-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Thames & Hudson

Review Posted Online: April 14, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2021

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THE PUMPKIN BOOK

The Pumpkin Book (32 pp.; $16.95; Sept. 15; 0-8234-1465-5): From seed to vine and blossom to table, Gibbons traces the growth cycle of everyone’s favorite autumn symbol—the pumpkin. Meticulous drawings detail the transformation of tiny seeds to the colorful gourds that appear at roadside stands and stores in the fall. Directions for planting a pumpkin patch, carving a jack-o’-lantern, and drying the seeds give young gardeners the instructions they need to grow and enjoy their own golden globes. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 15, 1999

ISBN: 0-8234-1465-5

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Holiday House

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 1999

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