Monday, June 6, 2011

Nonfiction Monday: Totally Human: Why we look and act the way we do by Cynthia Nicolson, illustrated by Dianne Eastman

This oversized, 40 page volume explores common human behaviors, from burping, feeling ticklish, using right vs. left hands, memory, yawning, sleep, and more. Several questions have one spread with a question and illustration on the left and a detailed explanation of the biology and physiology on the left, with an additional column with more information. Other questions have only one page.

The illustrations are rather odd to my taste. They are collaged photos of people with various body parts replaced with animal parts, photos in color and black and white, black drawings of bodies with animal heads pasted in on top. For example, one spread shares two questions, "Why do your eyes face forward?" and "Why do you see colors?" and a photograph of a girl's head is set into the center of the page. Half of the girl's face is black and white with an owl's mask and the other half is in color with a butterfly wing mask.

The facts and explanations are interesting, but the chunks of text are very large and may discourage some kids from reading more than a few pages. There are quite a few "weird body facts" books out there and I don't think this one really offers anything new.

Verdict: Add if you really have a need for more body books, but otherwise I would recommend Kids Can Press' Don't Touch That Toad, a more kid-friendly title with a wider variety of facts and shorter sections of text.

ISBN: 9781554535699; Published March 2011 by Kids Can Press; Review copy provided by publisher through Raab Associates.

1 comment:

asuen said...

Thanks for participating in Nonfiction Monday this week!
:-) Anastasia