'An effective combination of clear science writing and entertaining illustrations. A great addition to any children’s library or as a complementary text for science classes studying the microbiome'. -- SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNAL 'Tubby, expressive microbes guide readers through this deceptively comprehensive, gleefully illustrated guide to the human microbiome'. -- PUBLISHER'S WEEKLY A journey into the wonderful world of your microbiome! Within our bodies hides an entire world of organisms called microbes. They boost our immune systems, digest our food, regulate our metabolism and even impact on our mental health. Through Katie Brosnan’s personable illustrations, we follow the digestive process from the moment the food enters our mouths to the moment waste leaves our bodies. Along the way we learn about this fascinating scientific frontier and gain an insight into the vast ecosystem that exists inside us.
SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNAL STARRED REVIEW: This illustrated exploration of the body’s gut garden opens with a description of the main categories of microbes (fungi, bacteria, viruses) followed by a brief explanation of the role that microbes play in the world. The focus then turns to the relationship between microbes and the human body. Brosnan describes the symbiotic and largely positive relationship humans have with most microbes as well as the existence of more harmful pathogenic microbes. Next, the text examines how microbes work in the digestive system and how important it is to cultivate a healthy gut microbiome for optimal health. The illustrations are colorful and painterly; each page of this slightly oversize title is filled with anthropomorphized microbes and depictions of the human digestive system that complement the clear and scientific text. The final spread is devoted to the exciting future of microbial research; there is much to discover about the connection between our microbiome and autoimmune diseases, such as diabetes and Parkinson’s disease. VERDICT An effective combination of clear science writing and entertaining illustrations. A great addition to any children’s library or as a complementary text for science classes studying the microbiome.
PUBLISHER'S WEEKLY REVIEW: Tubby, expressive microbes guide readers through this deceptively comprehensive, gleefully illustrated guide to the human microbiome. Brosnan starts with the basics (“What Are Microbes?”) and progresses through “Microbes in the World” and pathogens (“The Bad Guys”). Discussions of microbes in the body include detailed explorations of how microbes aid digestion, the flourishing “gut garden” of the large intestine, and the immune system. Bright spreads alive with Brosnan’s colorful, loose-lined illustrations hold oodles of information broken up in digestible chunks, peppered with the microbes’ speech-bubble comments, which mix captivating facts (“Inside your mouth there are over 500 species of microbes”) with the occasional fart joke.
BOOKTRUST REVIEW: Microbes are tiny life forms you can only see with a microscope. They're on every part of your body, everything you touch and eat, in the air you breathe and the water you drink. But what do they do? And are they helpful, harmful, or both? Luckily, Katie Brosnan is on hand with a tremendously informative guide to these smallest of particles and organisms, which include bacteria, archaea (direct descendants of the first organisms on the planet), fungi, viruses, microscopic animals and protists.
Brosnan describes a microscopic universe which marvels with its ingenuity, variety and scale. Taking us through the different types of microbe, followed by how they work and live in the human body (mouth, throat, stomach, intestines and poo), she also explains what antibiotics do to valuable gut microbes, what prebiotics and probiotics are and even how fermented food can really help us tend our precious gut gardens. This is a wonderful and eye-opening guide to the smallest things in the world, and well worth a read.
THE AOI REVIEW: As part of our ever-expanding horizons, gut-health and making a seemingly complicated subject accessible to adults and children alike might seem like pandering to the zeitgeist, but Brosnan has managed to make a children’s book scientifically accurate, entertaining to all readers and aesthetically pleasing. A worthy addition to any bookshelf, Gut Garden is a fantastic way of introducing a mystifying and yet increasingly important subject to discerning readers.
THE LITERACY TREE REVIEW: Author-illustrator Katie Brosnan has expertly crafted this (yes- we are about to apply this word to all things ‘gut’) delightfully quirky book around a rather niche area of science. And oh how we wish we’d had this when teaching ‘microbes’ in upper key stage 2!
Perfect for supporting the science curriculum in key stage two or as a brilliant addition to your book corner or school library provided that you can (sorry - we can never resist a bit of word-play) stomach it!
NORTH SOMERSET TEACHERS BOOK AWARD REVIEW: This is a fascinating look at the ‘vast ecosystem that lives inside you’ and makes the subject extremely accessible and appealing- whatever your age! A brilliant introduction to exploring the connections between microbes and health, how the digestive system works and the work of scientists in this field, ‘Gut Garden’ makes an excellent addition to any library. A very enjoyable read!
A LITTLE BUT A LOT REVIEW: This book is PERFECT for Upper Key Stage 2. This book is JAM-PACKED full of information for children to take in, talk about and then probe further. I love the way this book is presented and the information is in small chunks, which is easy to digest (ha). It’s so wonderful to read something which has been so well thought out and flows so well. Kids are going to love this because it covers things that we don’t talk about so much – it’s a bit gross, but fascinating!
SCHOOL READING LIST REVIEW: *non-fiction book of the month* - Ideal as a school or class library book to provoke further research and reading.
READ IT DADDY REVIEW: This is a truly amazing title, one that again we don't often see dealt with as a subject but it's brilliantly done so here, a perfect jumping-off point for kids to discover all sorts of amazing biological functions our bodies are capable of.
THE READING REALM REVIEW: Informative, fun, accessible and beautiful all in one!
MY SHELVES ARE FULL REVIEW: Gut Garden entices the reader in to learn more about digestion and the microbes living inside us. Our curiosity is automatically drawn to the idea that scientists have still to discover so much more about our bodies. My children and I were particularly drawn to the illustrations of the internal organs and some explanations of how microbes work.
I can honestly admit to learning quite a lot from this book and it would make an excellent resource for science lessons in a primary school. There was a brilliant use of scientific language, and explanation alongside the fun illustrations.
I can see my family coming back to this book time and time again. It was cleverly explained and clearly Katie Brosnan has done her research on our digestive system. We spent ages reading this book!
LET THEM BE SMALL REVIEW: A really clever and engaging book that teaches quite difficult concepts in a fun way.
- Information Book Award