Melia and Jo

illus. by Jennifer Oxley. 48p. HMH. Aug. 2018. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781328916266.
K-Gr 2—The methodical Melia loves creating machines. The artistic Josephine loves to express herself. When the two cross paths, they don't appreciate one another at first. However, Jo's dabbling eventually turns into a source of inspiration for Melia. Likewise, Melia and her inventions prove useful to Jo. Once they discover this, they quickly realize that together, their strengths complement each other, allowing them to create things that neither could alone. Set within the STEAM model, this narrative imparts a lot of good life lessons. Melia and Jo's story shows how creativity can take different shapes, and that, even though the arts and sciences generally serve different purposes, and require different skill sets, they are not so unlike that they can't come together and be on equal footing. Fans of Andrea Beaty's books will appreciate the cute, digitally painted style, with colors that will attract the eye, and the girl-powered message. This also include a note about STEAM, and simple instructions for making an airplane in the back.
VERDICT A great book for encouraging kids to apply themselves to the STEAM disciplines, work together, and make friends. A strong choice.

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