Product Tag: 9780241188019


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How The Body Works


Gr 9 Up—This latest from DK offers a straightforward presentation of anatomical facts, ranging from the expected (cell diagrams, body systems, nutrition) to the delightfully obscure (the multiple immune system cells used to defeat pathogens, the chemical effects of near-death experiences). Boasting full-color illustrations on every page, which are surrounded by brief paragraphs of text, this title avoids a blanch-inducing textbook format. Even the most science-timid readers will find engagement in its creative exhibitions of diagrams and demonstrations. The book’s coverage, however, is broad, rather than deep; for example, the chemical factors behind sexual attraction are listed, but no further exploration of different sexualities is pursued. Additionally, the text occasionally employs the second person “you,” resulting in ambiguity over who is being addressed. This usage is especially confusing in the sidebar on menstruation in the “Feeling Attraction” spread, where the text conjectures that “you tend to flirt more and dress more attractively” during ovulation. This deviation from fact to social observation, here and in other areas, may be perplexing or jarring for readers. Otherwise, this volume is an ideal reference for those tackling challenging biology or anatomy homework. With the extensive index, finding explanations of terms is easy. Where the layout stumbles is its unorthodox page numbering. Both numbers are listed on the upper right corner of each spread, making accurate citation difficult. VERDICT This is a solid buy for all YA nonfiction purchasers keeping their 600s up-to-date.—Chelsea Woods, New Brunswick Free Public Library, NJ
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