Cover Image: Why Is Blood Red?

Why Is Blood Red?

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Member Reviews

A very colourful and lively human biology book for the school resource centre, this acts as if it's addressing regular questions from regular children (what is my biggest muscle? how come I breathe without thinking about it? should that really look that way – you know the kind) but that's of course only a front.  Every question gets a double-page spread (even if sometimes the question and answer, the core text of the book, is at the bottom right corner of the whole thing) that is never happy with being merely 'visual', and comes packed with subsidiary factoids, questions, revision quizzes and so much else.  Many educators would have preferred this to look more staid, sensible and perhaps old-fashioned, but that's not the Dorling Kindersley way, I find – they will make everything hyper-dynamic, given half the chance, with a full-frontal assault on the stock image gallery.  Some would certainly wish for all the topics to be grouped, and less scattershot - "why do I need food" comes much after "what happens to it when I've eaten it", and skin stretches throughout the book – but for a child supposed to fire connections from one subject to another and piece everything together themselves this is still on trend.  And still a most welcome volume.
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I would have loved this book as a child. It was informative, fun, easy to digest. Even reading as an adult, I learnt so many new things about the body that I just take for granted as a thing. For example, why do my feet go dead and why do I get pins and needles, the fact my body can detect things such as carbon dioxide levels and water and give me signals to breathe harder or drink more is fascinating. The pictures made it super attractive to children. My only critique is I’m not sure it is for 6-9 years old. The first half of the book covered things I did at GCSE. The second half did become more childlike and what I expected. But reading as an adult this didn’t bother me and makes it only more accessible for a wider age group.
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