A must-have for young military enthusiasts.

US ARMY ALPHABET BOOK

“A is for Army” in Pallotta’s latest alphabet book, co-written with a Navy spouse.

Each letter of the alphabet introduces interesting information and detailed insight into all aspects of the Army using brief yet descriptive paragraphs. Did you know helicopters are named after Native American people and tribes or that GI stands for government issue, referring to anything connected with the Army: blankets, batteries, rucksacks etc.? A multitude of topics are covered: weapons, aircraft and vessels, the infantry, regiments, and more. The recurring theme of the Army values—loyalty, duty, respect, selfless service, honor, integrity, and personal courage—is reinforced throughout even as the book accurately conveys the life of diverse Army soldiers and the scope of their responsibilities and career paths, including medics, paratroopers, special forces, and more. Bolster’s mixed-media illustrations take center stage on single- and double-page spreads. Photorealism vies with photographs to keep readers guessing as to exactly what they are looking at; an illustration of troops in various conveyances advancing in front of a giant camouflage chess queen is particularly effective. The simultaneously releasing companion, US Marines Alphabet Book, offers the same quality and scope of information with illustrations by Vickie Fraser. Readers will learn a smattering of the Navajo Code Talker alphabet used during World War II as an unbreakable code to pass secret messages.

A must-have for young military enthusiasts. (Informational picture book. 6-9)

Pub Date: Nov. 2, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-57091-953-4

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Charlesbridge

Review Posted Online: Sept. 24, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2021

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A solid introduction to fascinating artists, some familiar, others less so.

WOMEN ARTISTS A TO Z

Contemporary and historical female artists are showcased for younger readers.

The artists’ names aren’t presented in A-to-Z order. The alphabetical arrangement actually identifies signature motifs (“D is for Dots” for Yayoi Kusama); preferred media (“I is for Ink” for Elizabeth Catlett); or cultural, natural, or personal motives underlying artworks (“N is for Nature” for Maya Lin). Various media are covered, such as painting, box assemblage, collage, photography, pottery, and sculpture. One artist named isn’t an individual but rather the Gee’s Bend Collective, “generations of African American women in Gee’s Bend, Alabama,” renowned for quilting artistry. Each artist and her or their work is introduced on a double-page spread that features succinct descriptions conveying much admiring, easily comprehensible information. Colorful illustrations include graphically simplified representations of the women at work or alongside examples of their art; the spreads provide ample space for readers to understand what the artists produced. Several women were alive when this volume was written; some died in the recent past or last century; two worked several hundred years ago, when female artists were rare. Commendably, the profiled artists are very diverse: African American, Latina, Native American, Asian, white, and multiethnic women are represented; this diversity is reflected in their work, as explained via texts and illustrations.

A solid introduction to fascinating artists, some familiar, others less so. (minibiographies, discussion questions, art suggestions) (Informational picture book. 6-9)

Pub Date: Feb. 11, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-593-10872-7

Page Count: 64

Publisher: Dial Books

Review Posted Online: Dec. 8, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2020

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This lighthearted addition to the STEM shelf encourages children to question, hypothesize, experiment, and observe.

IT'S A ROUND, ROUND WORLD!

From the Joulia Copernicus series

In a confident first-person narrative, young scientist Joulia Copernicus debunks the story that Columbus “proved Earth is round.”

Informing readers that Columbus knew this fact, and so did most people of his time, Joulia also points out that “Ancient Greek, Islamic, and Indian scholars theorized that Earth was round WAY before Columbus’s time.” Confident Joulia explains how Columbus, shown as a haughty captain in the humorous, cartoon illustrations, and his fellow mariners confirmed Earth was round by discerning “that when ships sail away from you, they seem to disappear from the bottom. When they sail toward you, they appear from the top. On a flat Earth, you’d see the entire ship the entire time.” The accompanying illustrations, almost like animation cels, provide the visuals readers need to confirm these assertions. Joulia also turns to astronomy. A lunar eclipse is the highlight of a double-page spread with a large yellow sun, a personified blue and green Earth wearing sunglasses, and the moon moving in iterations through the Earth’s shadow. This shows readers that the Earth’s shadow is “ROUND!” Joulia has straight, brown hair and pale skin and is almost always the only human in any given illustration. It’s great to see a young woman scientist, but it’s too bad there’s not more diversity around her. Two experiments stimulate further exploration.

This lighthearted addition to the STEM shelf encourages children to question, hypothesize, experiment, and observe. (Informational picture book. 6-9)

Pub Date: Sept. 3, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-63592-128-1

Page Count: 40

Publisher: StarBerry Books

Review Posted Online: June 16, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2019

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