Wendy Pfeffer enjoyed early careers as a teacher and a nursery school director. She now devotes her time to writing and conducting workshops on creative writing for both adults and children. She is the author of the Let's-Read-and-Find-Out Science book Sounds All Around as well as The Gooney War and Popcorn Park Zoo. Ms. Pfeffer lives in Pennington, New Jersey. Steve Jenkins has illustrated many children's books, including What Do You Do with a Tail Like This?, a Caldecott Honor Book, and The Top of the World: Climbing Mount Everest, winner of the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award. He has also illustrated Wiggling Worms at Work, Life in a Coral Reef, and Almost Gone in the Let's-Read-and-Find-Out Science series. He lives in Boulder, Colorado.
K-Gr 3-This is a great book marred by a few unclear pictures. The well-organized text explains how worms improve the quality of soil and covers the basics about the animal's body structure, movement, diet, and reproduction. The writing is clear and engaging; in one instance, Pfeffer compares the segments on a worm's body to "the coils on a Slinky toy." Although the collage artwork is visually appealing, some of the images are a bit confusing. In one illustration accompanying the explanation of how a worm tunnels, the creature looks as if it has been chopped in two or torn up. In another, it looks as if it is decomposing. The book ends with suggestions for examining a worm in the field and a science-fair-type project using castings. Better choices include Kevin Holmes's Earthworms (Bridgestone, 1998), Michael Elsohn Ross's Wormology (Carolrhoda, 1996), and Bobbie Kalman's Squirmy Wormy Composters (Crabtree, 1992; o.p.).-Jean Lowery, Bishop Woods Elementary School, New Haven, CT Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.