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It's So Amazing!: A Book about Eggs, Sperm, Birth, Babies, and Families Paperback – Jul 22 2004


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 88 pages
  • Publisher: Candlewick; Reprint edition (July 22 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0763613215
  • ISBN-13: 978-0763613211
  • Product Dimensions: 25 x 0.9 x 29.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 658 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #81,141 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

The creators of It's Perfectly Normal, targeted to middle-schoolers, here reach out to a slightly younger audience with candor and humor, neatly distilling various aspects of sex, reproduction and love. An inquisitive, loquacious bird and an embarrassed bee act as comic and straight man and serve as diverting foils to Harris's conversational narrative; kids will both identify with and chuckle at the two characters' reactions and asides. The duo's cheerful banter also clarifies some potentially confusing issues ("So the fetus doesn't grow where the pizza goes!" proclaims the newly enlightened bee). Specific topics covered include changes in boys' and girls' bodies during puberty, intercourse, birth control, chromosomes and genes, adoption and adjusting to a newborn sibling. The roster of experts in the closing acknowledgments speaks to the sensitivity and intelligence with which Harris and Emberley handle their treatment of masturbation, sexual abuse, HIV and AIDS and homosexuality. Emberley's artwork ranges from lighthearted cartoon panels of a talking sperm meeting up with an egg in the fallopian tube to straightforward drawings of reproductive organs and a developing fetus. With its informal yet informed perspective, this volume renders much "amazing" phenomena reassuringly comprehensible. Ages 7-up. (Nov.)
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From School Library Journal

Kindergarten-Grade 4-Another barrier-breaking contribution by Harris and Emberley that seamlessly bridges It's Perfectly Normal (1994) and Happy Birth Day! (1996, both Candlewick). This oversized, attractive guide on reproduction and birth answers common questions such as "Exactly what is sex?" and "Where does the baby actually come out?" The familiar enthusiastic bird and reluctant bee narrate the comic cartoon panels, eventually deciding that the miracles of birth, families, and love are just "so amazing." Readers will appreciate the life-size illustration of a full-term fetus, and adults will be grateful for the many different ways Emberley portrays situations not always easy to explain to children. People are represented with a variety of body shapes and ethnicity, and Harris discusses sexual preferences and alternative family situations. While the illustrations are engaging and often hilarious, factual information is effectively presented in a clear, nonjudgmental tone that will inform and assure readers. Topics covered include basic anatomy, conception, fetal development, birth, genetics, adoption, and love. Sexual abuse and HIV are sensitively mentioned in short, informative chapters. An essential guide that will delight and inform and appeal to young readers as well as adults.
Katie O'Dell, Multnomah County Library, Portland, OR
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Most helpful customer reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Holly Rose on May 10 2004
Format: Hardcover
First off you need to know this is a large book. It's huge. The picture does not at all convey how huge this book really is. It's about two times the size of a normal size book. I really don't think the description is adequate. I expected this to be a basic story book. It is far more than that. This is a very scientific book. It is a lot like the book "A Child is Born" only geared for kids. By this I don't mean watered down or talking down to kids. It is perfect. In fact I would venture to say you could actually use this as your primary educational tool when teaching your kids about sex for the first time. I originally got a book that was advertised as being the best book to read to your kids when telling them about sex. Actually I think this is 1000 times better b/c it has pictures, it tells it graphically but in cartoon style. It is FAR less traumatic for those parents who don't feel comfortable broaching this subject. I will be using this as my primary book from now on. I am fully impressed. It is really underrated if you ask me.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Mom 2 Two on Aug. 16 2000
Format: Hardcover
This book is perfect for children to read before entering puberty! Robie Harris explains male and female body parts (inside and out), what changes take place during puberty, how an sperm fertilizes an egg, what sex is, what love is, what happens during pregnancy (including how a baby grows and how one is born), different types of families (gay, straight, adoption, etc), good and bad touches, and even a bit about HIV and AIDS.
The author explains everything very honestly without being judgmental, although he leaves room for a parent to explain his or her own values to a child. For example, while explaining masturbation he writes, "Every family has its own thoughts and feelings about masturbation...Some people and religions think it's wrong to masturbate."
The book covers a lot of information, but presents it in a fun and simple way. The cartoon illustrations are complete without being terribly graphic, and the small bird and bee throughout the book serve as "tour guides". This book will definitely be on my bookshelf when my daughter starts asking questions.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Erin Flynn Jantz on April 7 2003
Format: Hardcover
I originally ordered 4-5 books in this category and none of the others could compare. The comic relief offered by the two characters in the sidelines is absolutely wonderful. My 7 year old son could release any discomfort with the topics through laughter (often laughing harder than he would normally).
After loaning this book to friends who were all extremely happy with this book, I've decided I need another copy.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 27 2004
Format: Hardcover
This is a very comprehensive book about everything your child will need to now about childbirth and childbearing till about mid teens (including such issues as multiples, IVF). The reason I recommend this book for 9 year olds and older is because of the complexity(read confusion) of some of the egg-sperm pictures and even more important the book introduces the concept of intercourse. One of the pictures featured has a couple kissing under the blanket, the term sexual intercourse is introduced in the book.
It also has the introduction to the sexual maturity. Having a 6 and 3 year olds and expecting an addition now, I was looking for a simpler book to introduce/ answer questions about childbirth that would be appropriate for my older kid and did not find this book fitting the purpose.
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Format: Hardcover
Ah, what a relief it was for me to find this book to share with my two sons -- aged 8 and 10 at the time -- a book that is not only informative and engaging to young readers interested in sex and sexuality, but also one that actually "includes" all of the members of our family. I would very strongly recommend this book for alternative families -- the book gracefully included information about adoption and gay parenting without trying too hard (as some books do) or sticking it in as an afterthought (as many books do).
We read the book out loud as a family, all the way through, several times before it went upstairs to "live" with the boys' other books. Doing so allowed us to talk through the information, and really allowed me to see where my kids were in terms of information and understanding. Now, I see the book out every couple of months -- mostly being read by my older son, who will be 13 this summer.
It's So Amazing is an amazing book -- it manages to meet the entertainment AND informational needs of its young readers. I highly recommend it for your inquisitive kid.
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By A Customer on Aug. 1 2001
Format: Hardcover
This book is a great way to give kids sex education. It covers all subjects clearly and in an interesting fashion. However, I disagree with the age range it is recommended for. It is recommended for ages 8-10, and, while most of the material is appropriate for this age group, some is not. Children should receive sex education in stages. A child who takes the book and begins to read will learn about body changes and babies being born, but many in the age 8-10 age group are not ready to learn about intercourse. I know this because I have a 7 year old and a 10 year old. My 10 year old read the book "Growing Up, It's a Girl Thing" and was quite thrown by some of the information on periods and body changes. But all of that information was perfect for the stage she's at -- it was the information she needed, but nothing that would worry or overwhelm her. (It is the book I'd recommend for the first step in a girl's sex education.) My daughter is very well read, but not ready for "It's So Amazing." I will hold on to the book until she is.
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