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Flash Facts

DC Comics. Feb. 2021. 160p. ed. by Bialik, Mayim, ed. pap. $9.99. ISBN 9781779503824.
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Gr 6 Up–DC superheroes such as the Flash, Supergirl, and Cyborg hold forth on climate change, genetics, electricity, subatomic particles, virtual reality, and other STEM topics in this appealing nonfiction comics collection edited by actor Bialik, who holds a PhD in neuroscience. Each chapter was created by a different set of writers and artists, resulting in an enjoyable variety of storytelling and visuals, from illustrations that mimic the look of existing DC TV shows, like Teen Titans Go! or DC Super Hero Girls, to anime-esque drawings to dreamy depictions of ocean zones. Those unfamiliar with the wide array of DC superheroes may wish for a guide to keep characters straight. However, DC Universe fans will enjoy this well-put-together compilation and will appreciate the superheroes’ conversational tone and humor as they use real-world examples to bring science to life. Vibrant visuals will keep readers engaged even when, at times, clunky scientific explanations drag down narrative flow. Both the main cast and secondary characters are racially diverse, and women are depicted as actively taking part in STEM fields. A preface and afterword by Bialik, as well as sections containing references, experiments and activities, and short biographies of the writers and artists, are included.
VERDICT An upbeat, colorful comic book–themed guide to important STEM subjects. Hand to superhero fanatics interested in learning more about science.

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