Children's LiteratureFourth in the "Science Fun" series, this entry features simple experiments that introduce readers to balance, spin, centripetal and centrifical forces, friction and other concepts. While the information is presented in a straightforward and dry manner, the illustrations aim for humor, with a large-mouthed, unpleasant-looking female character straight from Mad Magazine who exhorts readers and a gray, egg-shaped creature named Igor to experiment. Even the typeface is noisy with bold, black conversation in square balloons alongside a more usual type for the narrative. If you can get by the format, the information is useful and children can spin many household objects to explore the properties of spinning, including a button on a string, tops, pinwheels and a paper helicopter. 2001, Millbrook, $23.40. Ages 7 to 10. Reviewer: Susan Hepler
School Library JournalGr 4-6-Cobb explores the nature of motion and force beginning with the observation that people are not really designed for spinning. This is followed by several examples of circular motion. Observations made about spinning, friction, and the gyroscope effect build on one another. Examples and experiments include whirlers, propellers, and yo-yos. The cartoon illustrations of the narrator (a female with big eyes and a large mouth) and her scientific assistant (a stubby, lavender-blue droid named Igor) are clever, but do not always clarify concepts, and they look as though they are intended for a much younger audience. Children who may be attracted by the cartoons, large type, and boxed comments are unlikely to understand the text. Lack of indexing and a table of contents further limits usefulness.-Kathryn Kosiorek, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Brooklyn, OH Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
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