Saturday, September 11, 2010

Don't touch that toad and other strange things adults tell you by Catherine Rondina, illustrated by Kevin Sylvester

"Meh. Another facty book about how stupid grown ups are. I will just skim it," I said to myself.

One hour later I had read it from beginning to end.

"Yeah, but who actually believes all this stuff anyways?" I said to myself.

Two days later, I realized I had quoted it to three different people, at least twice each.

Yep, we need this one.

With suitably kooky and humorous illustrations, Rondina walks us through Healthy Habits - did you know sugar doesn't make kids hyper? Wet hair has absolutely nothing to do with catching cold? Next up, we have Weird Science. Can you really scare someone to death? Is yawning contagious? How often should you brush your hair? Can a chicken live without its head? Next we have Food Fallacies. Does eating carrots improve your eyesight? Will you really get cramps if you go swimming after eating? Finally, we have Animal Tales, with the ever-popular will a toad give you warts? As well as other burning questions, like Is a dog's mouth cleaner than a human's? Will a falling cat always land on its feet? And Why do lemmings walk off cliffs - or do they? The book ends with a sly list of "Parentisms" just for fun.

This is a perfect book for reluctant readers or kids who like lists of facts, science, or debunking anything (in other words, every eleven-year-old that ever lived). The questions have a funny or silly scenario about the question, then a well-written explanation of whether or not it's true - or if it's unproven either way. This is a great one for school booktalks as well as fact displays or to hand out to your almanac and Guiness book of world record fans.

Verdict: A must-have for libraries serving elementary and middle school kids. Just don't be surprised if you find your young patrons quoting it back to you for the next couple months!

ISBN: 978-1554534548; Published August 2010 by Kids Can Press; Review copy provided by publisher through Raab Associates


sara the librarian said...

You should look at "Why Is Snot Green". I forgot the author, but we own it in LG.

Jennifer said...

Yay Sara blogging! You should add your blog to your profile so we can go look at it! I'll take a look at Snot too.