Fresh Picks: Beautiful Nonfiction

In the world of children's literature, picture books are the shining jewels that we admire for their beautiful illustrations and imaginative stories. Nonfiction titles are often seen as unglamorous workhorses, judged on their ability to meet educational standards in imparting information to their young readers. While there is certainly a necessary place for curriculum supporting, report fodder nonfiction, there is plenty of room on the shelves for nonfiction that captures the imagination as well as presenting the facts.

The Big Book of Bugs by Yuval Zommer is full to the brim with interesting and educational facts about different types of bugs (not just insects), including how to differentiate between different families of creepy crawlies. The whimsical illustrations are sure to enthrall young entomologists while still creating accurate representations of the invertebrate subjects. Report writers will find the index useful too. Image result for big book of bugs zommer

Smart About Sharks by Owen Davey showcases all sorts of shark facts using vintage style illustrations. Did you you know that a Dwarf Lantern Shark is the size of a pencil? Or that the Megamouth Shark has a glow-in-the-dark mouth? The silhouette of a seal and turtle next to a human on a surfboard next helps explain why sharks might sometimes attack humans, but the importance of sharks in mythology and ocean ecology emphasize more positive human-shark connections. Standard explorations of adaptations, species, and life cycles are elevated by eye-catching page compositions and interesting infographics. Compare sizes and shapes in the illustration below. The included index is organized by scientific name for each order and species.

Image result for smart about sharks owen davey

Professor Astro Cat's Atomic Adventure by Dr. Dominic Walliman and Ben Newman combines retro-looking art with comics inspiration to explain physics concepts in a kid-friendly way. Covering topics ranging from the scientific method to particle physics, Professor Astro Cat and friends walk readers through the basics of each concept while providing in text and illustrated definitions to bolded terms. Related topics are grouped together and a glossary/index helps keep the contents organized.

All of these titles are available for check-out in the Children's Room in the jNonfiction section.


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