Monday, April 18, 2016

Non-Fiction Monday: Way to Glow: amazing creatures that light up in the dark by Lisa Regan

Way to Glow: amazing creatures that light up in the dark by Lisa Regan. 48 p. Scholastic Inc., December, 2015. 9780545906616.

Do I really need two books on bioluminescence in my library? Yes! I recently read and enjoyed Glow by W.H. Beck, which was quietly stunning. Way to Glow is loud and in your face and crammed with facts, some of which are enclosed in "air" bubbles as a neat design feature. Each example of bioluminescence is given a double-page spread. If the page number is surrounded by a star, and the reader holds the page to a light source for 30 seconds, then retreats to a darkened space, the reader is treated to glow in the dark effects. And, yeah, they are pretty cool. 

Each set of end-pages features a different bioluminescent animal - one sea and one of the few land animals in a full-color double-page spread. The double-page spreads for the mostly sea creatures feature dramatic photos like the decapod shrimp repelling a predator by shooting light out of its mouth - hence the nickname fire-breathing shrimp. The firefly and the click beetle are the only land animals.

Unfamiliar words are in yellow and defined in a short glossary at the end of the book. My only complaint? No source notes or suggestions for further reading, just photo credits smooshed on the title page. Still, this attractively designed, informative introduction should have appeal for a variety of readers. Display it prominently. 

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