GOD'S LITTLE ASTRONOMER

From the God's Little Explorers series

An informative and inspirational bridge between science and religion for Christian households.

Cho surveys space with a Bible focus in her latest book.

Readers can follow along as two child astronomers, a brown-skinned child with orange puff pigtails and an Asian-presenting child with short dark hair, explore the stars, planets, comets, Earth, and the moon. Each subsequent spread after the opening features three bits of text. Paragraphs set in a larger font offer basic explanations related to both science and religion; text in a different color often picks out important messages or concepts: “God cares for you” or the names of the planets, for example. In a smaller font, more science is presented with appropriate vocabulary. Finally, a Bible verse ties in with the information on each spread. Throughout, Cho emphasizes the awesome wonder that is God’s creation and stresses that each reader is part of it: “Litte astronomer, know that our Father in heaven, our cool Creator, sees you as His most special creation in all the universe.” Miguéns’ brightly colored illustrations, which appear to have been created digitally, keep the focus on each spread’s topic. When the action shifts to Earth, several spreads show ways for kids to enjoy the outdoors and observe space on their own: viewing constellations through a telescope, watching a meteor shower, and keeping track of the moon phases.

An informative and inspirational bridge between science and religion for Christian households. (Religious nonfiction picture book. 3-7)

Pub Date: Feb. 20, 2024

ISBN: 9780593579411

Page Count: 40

Publisher: WaterBrook

Review Posted Online: Dec. 6, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2024

SNACK, SNOOZE, SKEDADDLE

HOW ANIMALS GET READY FOR WINTER

A good choice for a late fall storytime.

Animal behaviors change as they prepare to face the winter.

Migrate, hibernate, or tolerate. With smooth rhymes and jaunty illustrations, Salas and Gévry introduce three strategies animals use for coping with winter cold. The author’s long experience in imparting information to young readers is evident in her selection of familiar animals and in her presentation. Spread by spread she introduces her examples, preparing in fall and surviving in winter. She describes two types of migration: Hummingbirds and monarchs fly, and blue whales travel to the warmth of the south; earthworms burrow deeper into the earth. Without using technical words, she introduces four forms of hibernation—chipmunks nap and snack; bears mainly sleep; Northern wood frogs become an “icy pop,” frozen until spring; and normally solitary garter snakes snuggle together in huge masses. Those who can tolerate the winter still change behavior. Mice store food and travel in tunnels under the snow; moose grow a warmer kind of fur; the red fox dives into the snow to catch small mammals (like those mice); and humans put on warm clothes and play. The animals in the soft pastel illustrations are recognizable, more cuddly than realistic, and quite appealing; their habitats are stylized. The humans represent varied ethnicities. Each page includes two levels of text, and there’s further information in the extensive backmatter. Pair with Joyce Sidman and Rick Allen’s Winter Bees (2014).

A good choice for a late fall storytime. (glossary) (Informational picture book. 3-7)

Pub Date: Sept. 3, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5415-2900-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Millbrook/Lerner

Review Posted Online: June 15, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2019

HELLO AUTUMN!

Bruce Goldstone’s Awesome Autumn (2012) is still the gold standard.

Rotner follows Hello Spring (2017) with this salute to the fall season.

Name a change seen in northern climes in fall, and Rotner likely covers it here, from plants, trees, and animals to the food we harvest: seeds are spread, the days grow shorter and cooler, the leaves change and fall (and are raked up and jumped in), some animals migrate, and many families celebrate Halloween and Thanksgiving. As in the previous book, the photographs (presented in a variety of sizes and layouts, all clean) are the stars here, displaying both the myriad changes of the season and a multicultural array of children enjoying the outdoors in fall. These are set against white backgrounds that make the reddish-orange print pop. The text itself uses short sentences and some solid vocabulary (though “deep sleep” is used instead of “hibernate”) to teach readers the markers of autumn, though in the quest for simplicity, Rotner sacrifices some truth. In several cases, the addition of just a few words would have made the following oversimplified statements reflect reality: “Birds grow more feathers”; “Cranberries float and turn red.” Also, Rotner includes the statement “Bees store extra honey in their hives” on a page about animals going into deep sleep, implying that honeybees hibernate, which is false.

Bruce Goldstone’s Awesome Autumn (2012) is still the gold standard. (Informational picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: Sept. 5, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-8234-3869-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Holiday House

Review Posted Online: June 26, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2017

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