cloth, 38 p., $13.95
Bright splashes of David Katz's paintbrush illuminate the cover and illustrations of this vocational biography. Kristin Bozak details how she became a botany professor and researcher in enthusiastic language that prospective scientists can easily relate to. After listing "what is special about plants," Bozak describes her work in molecular botany, some of which is concerned with avocado ripening. Important ideas are embedded in the artwork; text is lifted from the opposite page and becomes a minor part of the vivid flowery images. When the Californian explores her motivation, "to help the world in important ways," she explains how "plants give us fuel, food, clothing and medicines." Those exact words are incorporated into the design immediately following. Not only does this book, which appeals to mature 4th through 7th graders, provide a definite focus, but it also includes several plant science lesson plans.
— Nancy McCray