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Planes and Helicopters (Machines at Work
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Gr 1-3-These titles explain the mechanics of how vehicles work: what makes them stop, start, or turn, etc. The information is very basic. For example, in Trucks, readers learn that "They are powered by an engine that turns their wheels. As the wheels turn, they move the truck forward." Cars focuses more on race cars than passenger vehicles. In each volume, the text is arranged in short paragraphs, accompanied by captioned photos and "Zoom In" sidebars that show close-ups of related vehicle parts. All the titles end with a quiz. Unfortunately, some of the stock photos are not helpful. In Cars, the spread on slowing down doesn't actually show the brakes. An image that shows ailerons in Planes is too small to be elucidating. Though for a slightly older audience, PowerKids Press's "Machines Inside Out" series has many more details about the workings of cars, trucks, motorcycles, and airplanes. (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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