Making More: How Life Begins

Norton. Mar. 2023. 72p. Tr $24.95. ISBN 9781324015840.
Gr 3-6–A young, light-skinned family takes a walk through a forested park and happens upon a doe who’s just given birth to a fawn. What follows is a closer look at the wild plants and animals, from trees and flowers to fish and frogs, “making more” all around them. This process of meiosis, when an egg cell and a sperm cell meet and merge, in all its various forms fills the rest of the book. Roy’s illustrations are, as always, a delight: realistic yet stylized; full of warmth and energy; and rich with the colors of the Pacific Northwest. Each method of fertilization is explained through diagrams that provide greater detail. Human reproduction is left out of the book, though young readers may arrive at questions about the mother in the family’s pregnant belly and the birthday party where they arrive at the end.
VERDICT Highly recommended for nonfiction and even parenting collections, where it will fly off the shelf with science-loving kids and neutralize any adult melodrama around talking to kids about sex.

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