Science: Sorted! Evolution, Nature and Stuff by Glenn Murphy
|Science: Sorted! Evolution, Nature and Stuff by Glenn Murphy|
|Category: Children's Non-Fiction|
|Reviewer: Keith Dudhnath|
|Summary: Glenn Murphy does it again, with two excellent looks at biology and astronomy. They make for fascinating and engaging reading, and deserve a place on every tween and young teen's bookshelf. Highly recommended.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 160||Date: April 2010|
|Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books|
|External links: Author's website|
Ever wanted to know about evolution, nature and stuff? Unsurprisingly, this is the book for you. If you're interested in space, black holes and stuff, then Glenn Murphy has also written a sister book in the Science: Sorted! series packed full of all the information you'd want to know. It's all written with the fabulous quality that made Why is Snot Green? such a must-read.
Each of the Science: Sorted! books is packed to the gills with all the information that tween and early teen readers need to have a strong understanding of biology or astronomy. In fact, I can think of more than a few adults who would benefit from a read through to fill in gaps in their knowledge. At no point do they feel like dry textbooks - these are light-hearted popular science books for kids, with plenty of jokes and puzzles woven in for good measure. The conversational style means everything is broken up into easily-digestible chunks, and the illustrations and Mike Phillips' fun cartoons keep the interest up throughout.
Of the two books, Evolution, Nature and Stuff is the better of the two. The concepts will be easier for children to understand, so Glenn Murphy has freer rein to have fun with it, which in turn opens it up to younger children. Space, Black Holes and Stuff requires slightly higher thinking, but it's still communicated with amazing skill, perfectly pitched, and not dumbed down. Both are exactly as popular science books should be for children.
There are some small glitches which bear comment. Evolution, Nature and Stuff suffers from a printing error with a couple of the jokey footnotes, leading to unintelligible text. The problems in Space, Black Holes and Stuff are a little bigger: a promised appendix of when you can see the planets isn't there. Worst of all, there's a glaring error, claiming that a year is 364.75 days long, rather than 365.25 days. None of the glitches spoil things, but I was very surprised to see them given the exceptional quality throughout the rest of the books.
Those small points aside, these are superb reads that should grace every child's bookshelf. If they've been watching the excellent Wonders of the Solar System presented by Brian Cox with you, then Space, Black Holes and Stuff is a particularly apt accompaniment. Highly highly recommended.
My thanks to the publishers for sending them to Bookbag.
For other excellent popular science books for children, check out Dinosaurs (Henry's House) by Philip Ardagh and Mike Gordon, The Comic Strip History of Space by Sally Kindberg and Tracey Turner, and Will Jellyfish Rule the World? by Leo Hickman.
You can read more book reviews or buy Science: Sorted! Evolution, Nature and Stuff by Glenn Murphy at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy Science: Sorted! Evolution, Nature and Stuff by Glenn Murphy at Amazon.com.
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