Another rich resource for young eco-warriors.



Practical actions for reducing waste for young readers concerned about the environment.

Science writer Thomas offers 50 doable suggestions for readers keen to reduce their “eco-impact.” The book was originally published in the U.K. in 2018 as This Book Is Not Rubbish, and language, examples, and statistics have been changed for a U.S. readership in most cases. But the title change is misleading. Only a portion of this book is about garbage in the usual sense of kitchen waste; the writer defines waste broadly. Her “eco-tips” include using less water, especially hot water; changing gift and party habits; avoiding glitter and plastic straws; composting and reducing food waste; picking up litter; trading clothing and goods; reducing energy use in myriad ways; repairing and reusing what we have; and avoiding unnecessary use of paper—even greeting cards and school assignments! Even more broadly, she suggests helping the nearby environment, thinking about the environmental costs of food and clothing, and reducing video gaming (evidently an energy hog). One chapter introduces five young eco-warriors; another suggests projects for aspiring citizen scientists. Art projects and even geocaching are other ways to get closer to nature and to show appreciation. Though there is some overlap, most suggestions are different from or complementary to those in companion title This Book Will (Help) Cool the Climate, published in 2020 in the U.K. but simultaneously with this title in this country. Both are useful.

Another rich resource for young eco-warriors. (index) (Nonfiction. 9-14)

Pub Date: Feb. 23, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-593-30867-7

Page Count: 208

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: Nov. 27, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 2020

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Contentwise, an arbitrary assortment…but sure to draw fans of comics, of science, or of both.


Flash, Batman, and other characters from the DC Comics universe tackle supervillains and STEM-related topics and sometimes, both.

Credited to 20 writers and illustrators in various combinations, the 10 episodes invite readers to tag along as Mera and Aquaman visit oceanic zones from epipelagic to hadalpelagic; Supergirl helps a young scholar pick a science-project topic by taking her on a tour of the solar system; and Swamp Thing lends Poison Ivy a hand to describe how DNA works (later joining Swamp Kid to scuttle a climate-altering scheme by Arcane). In other episodes, various costumed creations explain the ins and outs of diverse large- and small-scale phenomena, including electricity, atomic structure, forensic techniques, 3-D printing, and the lactate threshold. Presumably on the supposition that the characters will be more familiar to readers than the science, the minilectures tend to start from simple basics, but the figures are mostly both redrawn to look more childlike than in the comics and identified only in passing. Drawing styles and page designs differ from chapter to chapter but not enough to interrupt overall visual unity and flow—and the cast is sufficiently diverse to include roles for superheroes (and villains) of color like Cyborg, Kid Flash, and the Latina Green Lantern, Jessica Cruz. Appended lists of websites and science-based YouTube channels, plus instructions for homespun activities related to each episode, point inspired STEM-winders toward further discoveries.

Contentwise, an arbitrary assortment…but sure to draw fans of comics, of science, or of both. (Graphic nonfiction. 9-12)

Pub Date: Feb. 2, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-77950-382-4

Page Count: 160

Publisher: DC

Review Posted Online: Jan. 13, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2021

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A splendid volume for young adventurers.



Based on her work with middle-school students, Long offers lessons on how to stay healthy and out of trouble while awaiting rescue, the same lessons taught to adults in her survival classes.

Her matter-of-fact, no-nonsense tone will play well with young readers, and the clear writing style is appropriate to the content. The engaging guide covers everything from building shelters to avoiding pigs and javelinas. With subjects like kissing bugs, scorpions, snow blindness and “How going to the bathroom can attract bears and mountain lions,” the volume invites browsing as much as studying. The information offered is sometimes obvious: “If you find yourself facing an alligator, get away from it”; sometime humorous: Raccoons will “fight with your dog, steal all your food, then climb up a tree and call you bad names in raccoon language”; and sometimes not comforting: “When alligators attack on land, they usually make one grab at you; if they miss, you are usually safe.” But when survival is at stake, the more information the better, especially when leavened with some wit. An excellent bibliography will lead young readers to a host of fascinating websites, and 150 clipart-style line drawings complement the text.

A splendid volume for young adventurers. (index not seen) (Nonfiction. 9-14)

Pub Date: May 1, 2011

ISBN: 978-1-56976-708-5

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Chicago Review Press

Review Posted Online: April 5, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2011

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