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list price: $19.95
edition:Hardcover
published: April 2012
ISBN:9781554535705
publisher: Kids Can Press

Earth-Friendly Buildings, Bridges and More

The Eco-Journal of Corry Lapont

by Etta Kaner, illustrated by Stephen MacEachern

reviews: 2
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architecture, physics
5 of 5
1 rating
rated!
rated!
list price: $19.95
edition:Hardcover
published: April 2012
ISBN:9781554535705
publisher: Kids Can Press
Description

Introducing Corry Lapont: 12-year-old and aspiring “green” engineer. This dynamic title takes the form of Corry's scrapbook. It's a dazzling collection of postcards, brochures and other memorabilia documenting Corry's research into green design. Kid-friendly language explains the engineering behind some of the planet's most cutting edge towers, bridges, tunnels, domes, dams, dikes, locks and levees. These structures include the Vizcaya Bridge in Spain, where gondolas transport cars over the Nervion River, and the Channel tunnel, where trains speed between England and France in just 35 minutes. Readers will explore the environmental impact of structures, such as the pros and cons of dam construction and how rainwater can be used to cool buildings. Complex concepts are clarified with simple activities, as well as colorful drawings, fun facts and the occasional wisecrack from Corry's kid brother, Riley.

About the Authors
Etta Kaner is an elementary school teacher and writer for both children and educators. Her children's books have won numerous awards, including the Silver Birch Award, the Scientific American Young Readers Book Award and the Science in Society Book Award. She lives in Toronto, Ontario.
Author profile page >

STEPHEN MACEACHERN studied both animation and illustration at the celebrated Sheridan College. His first book, Lights, Camera, Action!, written by Lisa O’Brien, won the White Raven Award. He lives in Erin, Ontario.
Author profile page >
Contributor Notes

Etta Kaner is a retired elementary school teacher and writer for both children and educators. Her children's books have won numerous awards, including the Silver Birch Award, the Scientific American Young Readers Book Award and the Science in Society Book Award. She lives in Toronto, Ontario.

Stephen MacEachern has illustrated more than 10 children's books. He is also a web and print designer and has taught illustration at the Sheridan Institute, where he himself studied. Stephen lives in Erin, Ontario, with his wife and two children.

Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
Age:
8 to 12
Grade:
3 to 7
Awards
  • Short-listed, Diamond Willow Award, The Saskatchewan Young Readers' Choice Award
  • Short-listed, Silver Birch Nonfiction Award, Ontario Library Association
  • Short-listed, Information Book Award, Children's Literature Roundtables of Canada
  • Winner, Best Children's Books of the Year, Bank Street Children's Book Committee
  • Short-listed, Red Cedar Award, BC Young Reader's Choice
  • Short-listed, Science in Society Book Award, Canadian Science Writers' Association
  • Winner, Best Books for Kids & Teens, Canadian Children's Book Centre
Editorial Reviews

Kaner offers a detailed introduction to green technology for readers interested in the environment and architecture.—Publishers Weekly


This handsome, information-rich, yet brief illustrated "eco-journal" fills a gap---and more.—Kirkus Reviews


The explanations and presentation are kid-friendly ...—School Library Journal

Reader Reviews

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Canadian Children's  Book Centre
Librarian review

Earth-Friendly Buildings, Bridges and More: The Eco-Journal of Corry Lapont

Two new non-fiction titles have fictional narrative threads that make the books bubble with excitement. In Hey Canada! and Earth-Friendly Buildings, Bridges and More: The Eco-Journal of Corry Lapont, the books’ young female narrators set out on fact-finding journeys with interesting similarities. In Hey Canada!, nine-year old Alice journals on a netbook as she crosses our nation with her jesting Gran, her cousin Cal and his mischievous hamster. Corry, the narrator of Earth-Friendly Buildings, Bridges and More: The Eco-Journal of Corry Lapont, creates a global postcard scrapbook about the fascinating structures she has researched, supported by her engineer parents and playfully encouraged by her younger brother.

Shifting the role of information downloader from character to character keeps the books fresh and fast moving. Both books offer quick facts — knowledge nuggets from the data-loving male characters. Cal, “The Official Fact Dispenser” in Hey Canada!, Tweets his impressions of haggis and dulse. In Earth-Friendly Buildings, Corry’s younger brother, Riley “The Factoid Finder,” spouts speech bubbles that insist readers “Listen to this!” The adults have their roles, too. Corry’s mom suggests one of the super interesting challenges as readers are urged to test “the strongest pier shape for a bridge.” Gran in Hey Canada! lists things for her grandchildren, as well as readers, to observe as they visit each province and territory.

Visuals are key to amping up the cool factor in each book. The themes of sibling / cousin rivalry offer fun fodder galore to talented illustrators Milan Pavlovic (Hey Canada!) and Stephen MacEachern (Earth-Friendly Buildings). Their characters also beam at readers from comic-strip-style chapterettes (“Fortress Louisbourg, Cape Breton Island, 1745” in Hey Canada! and “The Locks of the Rideau Canal” in Earth-Friendly Buildings). Again, ‘mixing it up’ is the theme of the books, and drawings are interspersed with photographs. In the text next to the shiny, eye-catching image of London’s pickle-shaped Swiss Re tower in Earth-Friendly Buildings, readers learn that the building has no parking spaces for cars, “But it has lots of parking for bicycles!” Most of the photographs in Hey Canada! are small or murky and, therefore, miss an opportunity to hook readers or give clear pictorial information. However, Hey Canada! has well-done maps, features that Earth-Friendly Buildings could have used to help readers situate its dykes and domes.

Both authors have polished their skills through the publication of numerous non-fiction titles — which is evident in both their writing and their selection of facts. Earth-Friendly Buildings author Etta Kaner’s background as a teacher helps her understand which facts are appealing to young readers. Vivien Bowers, who has masterfully delivered Can-con in Wow Canada! and other Canadianthemed books, tackles her beloved topic with pep in Hey Canada! These wonderful non-fiction books inspire children of all reading abilities and interests to follow the fictional narrator’s examples and become adventurers exploring the world.

Source: The Canadian Children's Bookcentre. Summer 2012. Volume 35 No. 3.

Canadian Children's  Book Centre
Librarian review

Earth-Friendly Buildings, Bridges and More: The Eco-Journal of Corry Lapont

This book looks at fascinating, earth-friendly structures from around the world, including skyscrapers, bridges, tunnels and domes and, in a final section, at dams, dikes, locks and levees. Also included is information about the different professionals who work on these structures and a glossary of terms. The “Check This Out” sections offer mini experiments children can perform to further their understanding of the concepts being explained.

Source: The Canadian Children’s Book Centre. Best Books for Kids & Teens. Spring, 2012.

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