Wednesday, January 10, 2024

Today's read... The Human Body by Ruth Redford

I'm going to shout-out a late, Happy Book Birthday to today's read. It released last week, just in time for the new school semester. This read is nonfiction, although it does include a bit of scifi-alien fun. At 48 pages, it's pretty short and still, should cover more than a few systems and highlights surrounding the human body. I'm expecting factsmixed with quirky humor...but let's just find out if this really is the mix inside.

Oh, and the proceeds from this book go to medical research and education through the Mayo Clinic.

An Alien's Guide
by Ruth Redford
Illustrated by Leandro Cunha
Mayo Clinic
Middle Grade Nonfiction / Graphic Novel
48 pages

Take a journey inside the body—as an alien!

Hop aboard a flying saucer and travel alongside your alien guides who are on a mission to understand the wonders of human body systems. High-impact graphic art explores the circulatory system, the digestive system, the skeletal system, and more.

Lively text introduces concepts such as what the body is made of and how it responds to stimuli such as broken bones, burns, and illnesses. From major organs to types of blood cells, story-driven text delivers expert-reviewed nonfiction information about the amazing human body and how it works to stay healthy. Get a close-up view of how a healthy body works to fight invaders like viruses. . .or spaceships.

A raucous graphic-format exploration of body systems with a twist.

Mayo Clinic Press Kids creates empowering health and wellness content in partnership with pediatric experts. Proceeds from the sale of every book go to benefit important medical research and education at Mayo Clinic.

GOODREADS    /     AMAZON    /     B&N


Holy Moly Wowza! This read zips quickly through the systems of the body, zapping through facts, information and explanations in quirky space style.

Diving into this read brought back memories of the cartoon Once Upon A Time...Life but instead of incorporating adventure, centers on two squid-like aliens as they travel and explore one specimen's body. From the digestive system and its ooze to the high-level-attacks of the immune system, more than a few aspects of the human body are explored...and that in concentrated style. While it does center around two aliens exploring the body, this is not a story. The aliens are silly, at times, and use quick-punch humor during their verbal back-and-forth questions and explanations, but this read keeps biology securely on center stage. 

The graphics are bright and bold with a cartoony style, guaranteeing a light-hearted atmosphere. Yet, the various organs and systems stay close enough to reality to bring the information across clearly. 

This is not a light read even though the aliens do draw more than a few smiles with their interactions. The information comes across rapid-fire as the two zip from one aspect of the body to the next, barely leaving room for an extra breath. It's a lot to handle in one sitting...brain overload! But it is divided enough into sections to enable tackling one section at a time. It's grabbing and holds attention, while explaining how various aspects function...and that, sometimes, in more detailed ways than is often seen for this age group. It did come across a bit hectic and scattered, at times, as it crams quite a bit into the short read. There's an index at the back to help locate exact themes as well as a glossary for defining terms.

Those wanting to learn more about the human body will find quite a bit of information in these pages and discover aspects they might not have known before. It just hits fast and hard. I do see this working well as additional material when discussing the human body (classrooms, homeschoolers), since it isn't difficult to pin-point certain topics and adds quite a bit of fun. Plus, the two aliens are endearing.

And here they are...

Ruth Redford is a freelance editor and author based in the United Kingdom. She loves writing and researching nonfiction projects.

Leandro Cunha, born in Rio de Janeiro, is an illustrator and art director. Passionate about comics and animations, he brings to life charming characters from everyday life to imaginary worlds to captivate children and adults.

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