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IT'S SO AMAZING! by Robie H. Harris


A Book About Eggs, Sperm, Birth, Babies, and Families

by Robie H. Harris

Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 1999
ISBN: 0-7636-0051-2
Publisher: Candlewick

Harris and Emberley fill the gap between their picture book, Happy Birth Day (1996), and the instant-classic It’s Perfectly Normal (1994) with this equally sensitive, good-humored take on love and sex, puberty, genetics, pregnancy, and related topics, from sibling rivalry to HIV. Emberley supplies side (and snide) commentary from an eager bird and a reluctant bee to go along with cartoon depictions of anatomical details, human figures in a marvelous variety of ages, shapes, and skin colors, and a dramatic sequence covering fetal development from one month to nine in actual size. Never talking down to readers, Harris takes wide-angled views of sexual preferences, birth control, and the meaning of “family,” while making the terminology less forbidding by mixing it with familiar comparisons: “The epididymis is a long, twisty, coiled tube. It is shaped somewhat like a telephone receiver, but smaller.” The collaborators expertly walk the line between frankness and bluntness, keeping the actual sex act under the covers, and nimbly explaining how abuse differs from normal human contact and affection. Closing on a cheery note with a look at new baby customs in several parts of the world, this provides sensible, reassuring answers to readers’ questions and concerns, and interrupts the rain of information with occasional silliness. (index) (Nonfiction. 8-10)