Still, anatomy books for this age are scarce, and this one is relatively sturdy and amusing to browse, perhaps compensating...

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HUMAN BODY LIFT-THE-FLAP

A lift-the-flap board book briefly explores the anatomy and physiology of the human body.

With just 16 somewhat busy pages, this is hardly an in-depth examination of the body. Each page features a brief bit of introductory text. The first spread is a general overview, and those that follow examine different functions or parts: the brain, muscles and skeleton, circulatory system, respiratory system, digestive system, senses and, finally, the skin. Most pages feature lots of lively, round-eyed children of various races and both sexes; they include two or three flaps to lift that provide an interior view of a body part and are accompanied by related text. A few are a little confusing. One depicts and describes arteries in red and veins in blue but fails to clarify that these aren’t the actual colors within the body. Another states, “Every hour, you take in enough air to fill almost 45 balloons,” and shows a child blowing up a balloon, but that is about one quarter of the actual amount of air breathed in. A greater issue is the format; the apparent audience of young grade schoolers may not all appreciate a cardboard-paged, rounded-corner format that’s typically appropriate for much younger children.

Still, anatomy books for this age are scarce, and this one is relatively sturdy and amusing to browse, perhaps compensating for its other issues. (Informational picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: April 8, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-7534-7060-2

Page Count: 16

Publisher: Kingfisher

Review Posted Online: Feb. 12, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2014

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Cool and stylish.

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ADA TWIST, SCIENTIST

Her intellectual curiosity is surpassed only by her passion for science. But what to do about her messy experiments?

Ada is speechless until she turns 3. But once she learns how to break out of her crib, there’s no stopping the kinky-haired, brown-skinned girl. “She tore through the house on a fact-finding spree.” When she does start speaking, her favorite words are “why,” “how,” and “when.” Her parents, a fashion-forward black couple who sport a variety of trendy outfits, are dumbfounded, and her older brother can only point at her in astonishment. She amazes her friends with her experiments. Ada examines all the clocks in the house, studies the solar system, and analyzes all the smells she encounters. Fortunately, her parents stop her from putting the cat in the dryer, sending her instead to the Thinking Chair. But while there, she covers the wall with formulae. What can her parents do? Instead of punishing her passion, they decide to try to understand it. “It’s all in the heart of a young scientist.” Though her plot is negligible—Ada’s parents arguably change more than she does—Beaty delightfully advocates for girls in science in her now-trademark crisply rhyming text. Roberts’ illustrations, in watercolor, pen, and ink, manage to be both smart and silly; the page compositions artfully evoke the tumult of Ada’s curiosity, filling white backgrounds with questions and clutter.

Cool and stylish. (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 6, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-4197-2137-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Abrams

Review Posted Online: July 2, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2016

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“It’s time to head back home,” the narrator concludes. “You’ve touched the Earth in so many ways.” Who knew it would be so...

TOUCH THE EARTH

From the Julian Lennon White Feather Flier Adventure series , Vol. 1

A pro bono Twinkie of a book invites readers to fly off in a magic plane to bring clean water to our planet’s oceans, deserts, and brown children.

Following a confusingly phrased suggestion beneath a soft-focus world map to “touch the Earth. Now touch where you live,” a shake of the volume transforms it into a plane with eyes and feathered wings that flies with the press of a flat, gray “button” painted onto the page. Pressing like buttons along the journey releases a gush of fresh water from the ground—and later, illogically, provides a filtration device that changes water “from yucky to clean”—for thirsty groups of smiling, brown-skinned people. At other stops, a tap on the button will “help irrigate the desert,” and touching floating bottles and other debris in the ocean supposedly makes it all disappear so the fish can return. The 20 children Coh places on a globe toward the end are varied of skin tone, but three of the four young saviors she plants in the flier’s cockpit as audience stand-ins are white. The closing poem isn’t so openly parochial, though it seldom rises above vague feel-good sentiments: “Love the Earth, the moon and sun. / All the children can be one.”

“It’s time to head back home,” the narrator concludes. “You’ve touched the Earth in so many ways.” Who knew it would be so easy to clean the place up and give everyone a drink? (Picture book. 6-8)

Pub Date: April 11, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-5107-2083-1

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Sky Pony Press

Review Posted Online: Feb. 4, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2017

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