Children's Literature - Marilyn CourtotThe sun is a star as opposed to a planet or a moon that “drives the solar system.” Like the planets in our solar system, the sun also has an orbit. The sun also rotates and like some of the other gas planets it rotates at different speeds at the equator and poles. The sun is made up of two major elementshydrogen and heliumwith just traces of other elements. The sun’s core is made up of hydrogen atoms that smash against each other creating helium. Helium is lighter than hydrogen and the mass that escapes becomes light that travels away from the sun. Rainbows occur when the sun’s rays hit particles of water vapor in our atmosphere. When a solar wind collides with our atmosphere it produces a light show called an aurora. These winds travel at millions of miles per hour and fortunately, the Earth has an atmosphere and magnetic field that block most of the dangerous high-energy particles. The sun is both good and bad for peopleit can damage eyes and skin, but it also is a source of vitamin D. It is also the source of almost every motion on earth and Sir William Herschel first explained the cycle of vegetation. The food nourished by the sun produces the energy that people and animals need to grow. The sun will eventually die, but it will be billions of years from now. The answer to the question posed at the beginning of the book follows the “True Statistics” section and even the back cover contains some interesting information. The book’s generous full color photographs and illustrations help easily explain the facts. The books in this “New True Books: Space” series about the planets and Earth’s moon offer an enticing format. The first page challenges readers to find out which of two statements is true. There is an arrow that contains the text: “Find the answers in this book.” To help young readers appreciate the format of more substantial books for older readers, this one contains a content spread that lists each chapter heading followed by an intriguing question. There are also references to the back matter containing true statistics, resources, important words, an index and a brief blurb about the author. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot; Ages 8 to 10.
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