A quick and cheery tour of physical science, animated both by bright cartoon illustrations and a variety of pop-ups and moving parts.
With an appropriately kinetic mix of colors and visual angles, easily digestible blocks of commentary combine with an array of sliders, pull tabs, 3-D items, flaps and glued-in minibooks. Each spread covers a force or phenomenon from friction and pressure to light, magnetism and electricity. Along with short but coherent explanations of general principles, Adams tucks in introductions to four significant scientists of the past and also an occasional easy-to-reproduce demonstration. An elastic band on the “Sound” spread won’t last long and some flaps (which also tend not to last long when young children are around) have significant passages of text printed on them, but overall the features are cleverly designed. A squirt gun shoots a column of paper “water,” a Frankenstein’s monster comes to life with the pull of a tab and a schematic electric circuit will either “light” a bulb or fail to if interrupted by an insulating ducky. The presentation as a whole offers a painless dose of physics for either total novices or older readers in need of a refresher.
A fragile but engaging look at “the science of how stuff…interacts with energy.” (Pop-up nonfiction. 8-10)