Monday, October 7, 2013

How the Meteorite Got to the Museum

 Kirkus Reviews starred (September 15, 2013)

Hartland follows up earlier titles about museum acquisitions of an ancient Egyptian sphinx and remains of a dinosaur with a lively new one based on the travels of the Peekskill meteorite to the American Museum of Natural History With a catchy, cumulative "House That Jack Built"--like refrain, a science teacher chronicles for her students the travels of a meteoroid from outer space to the atmosphere over the United States, across several states, into a parked car in Peekskill, N.Y., and on to the museum. Text introducing the various role-players is set on double-page spreads of childlike paintings full of interesting details. The meteor zips across the sky past a barking dog in Kentucky, sports fans with cameras in Pennsylvania and on down through a teenager's parked car, where various officials investigate. Finally, there are the museum employees who identify, acquire, explain and display it. Each participant's title is written in capital letters and given a recognizable typeface and color. The verbs in the refrain vary intriguingly: The dog barks, yelps, woofs, howls, ruffs, arfs, yips and yaps. The backmatter includes more about the history of this particular meteorite and meteorites in general. This lighthearted, behind-the-scenes look at museum work does double duty as a much-needed introduction to meteorites: most children's closest possible connection to outer space.(Informational picture book. 6-10)

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