Follow a breath into the lungs of a little girl. Reimagined as an upside-down tree, lungs usher that breath into her as light, then out as a song imbued with stardust. Respiratory science becomes a story poem of breath’s journey, connecting us to one another and the universe. Included is a glossary of breathing words.
Outside,/ it’s air/ until…/ you breathe in, inhale./ And then/ inside/ air becomes/ breath.” In language both simple and grand, physician and poet Farid describes how we are connected to the universe with each breath we take into our lungs, “the upside-down tree/ inside your rising chest.” Illustrator Renkl renders respiratory science for young readers as a gorgeous blue-green garden-galaxy. The metaphors swirl into an understanding that our human bodies don’t stand over the natural world, but are part of it. The book concludes with a useful glossary of “Breathing Words.
— School Library Journal
Science and art combine in an appealing presentation demonstrating how breathing nourishes our bodies as part of the larger ecosystem. A color palette of blues, greens, and white suggests the interplay of earth and sky. An opening aerial view shows a young girl with light brown skin, arms outstretched and eyes closed, taking in air. The images have a collage appearance, with realistic flowers, layered cutouts, and painted pieces all intricately assembled on painted backgrounds. Realism and poetry intersect as lungs are depicted as “upside-down trees” whose flowering branches grow as the girl breathes. Gold stars glow in the illustrations, highlighting the connection between the atmosphere and an inner light created as people inhale and exhale. While the text employs short, poetic phrases and descriptions, a glossary of Breathing Words explains the physical aspects of respiration, including the various parts of the lungs, such as bronchioles and alveoli. Unusual and attractive, this book will be useful in helping children develop mindfulness techniques.
Art, science, and poetry masterfully converge in this incredible new picture book by Diana Farid. Now more than ever, our kids need science - they need to understand the human body. This is the perfect intro!
— Christina Nosek, Literacy Expert and Classroom educator
This book is so damn beautiful. A must read for kids. Within our breath lies the magic of the universe.
— Justin Baldoni, Actor, Director, Producer
so gorgeously executed
— Dave Eggers, Best-selling Author and Publisher
This book will take your breath away. A poetic explanation of how we breathe. The images and word choice are capturing. Add this to your classroom library and bookroom.
— Clare Landrigan, Educator, Author, Child Literacy expert and advocate
This is the beautiful book that we need now in the world.
— Homa Tavangar, best-selling author of Growing Up Global
A stunningly beautiful book about the precious air around and inside of us. This life-giving force and the miracle of how it connects us all to the world, to the universe, and all living things is illustrated in inspired mixed media collage. An uplifting and expansive read for anyone who breathes.
With mesmerizing illustrations and crisp stanzas, Farid and Renkl bring us a picture book experience that children and adults will savor on every page. I was taken with the collage-style art, and as a fellow poet loved how carefully each word was chosen for this short but sweet extended verse-poem. The glossary of terms at the end rounds out ell, offering concise explanations of key scientific terms related to respiration. A great choice for parents who want an opening to talk about the benefits of meditation and proper breathing with their child.
— Paul Murufas, Books Inc., San Francisco