Only One

Random/Anne Schwartz. Apr. 2022. 40p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780399557033.
K-Gr 3–This informative picture book starts with a blonde gender-neutral child (likely a girl, as the book is dedicated to Greta Thunberg) telling a blonde sibling about one speck that exploded to create our universe. They travel outside where they are joined by a few other children, of more diverse backgrounds, as the child explains about the stars and planets in our galaxy and then about the atmosphere, terrain, and millions of species on Earth. The Earth is described as “our one and only planet to care for, love and preserve” and the closing pages show the child, along with other children and adults, planting a tree. Simple text clearly informs young readers about earth and space science as well as environmental conservation. The illustrations perfectly match the text and help define new terms such as how some galaxies have names that match their shape (Cartwheel, Sunflower, Sombrero, Tadpole). The artwork has soft strokes yet vibrantly brings to life our marvelous universe. Hopkinson has taken complex science and presented it in a way that even the youngest of readers will understand.
VERDICT This book is important to add to all collections because of its comprehensive look at the universe and message about the importance of protecting the planet.

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