Reviews for Marine biologists on a dive

Kirkus
Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

What do marine biologists do? To answer that question, Fliess focuses on fieldwork, certainly the most glamorous part of the job. After months of research, Maggie, a Black marine biologist, and her racially diverse team dive into the ocean to swim with humpback whales. They each have a different task, related to their personal research questions, and they’ve each brought different tools. The straightforward text offers general information about humpback whales, including migration, whale song, the use of fluke-slapping as an alarm signal, and diet (krill), as well as the importance of a hypothesis, part of the scientific method. At the conclusion of their research, the team members free a young whale calf trapped in a fishing net—an episode likely to appeal to young readers and listeners as well as a subtle reminder of the problem of trash in our waters. Depicting characters with round, oversize heads, Powell’s illustrations make the dive look both easy and fun, with scenes underwater and in the lab. One final spread includes relevant labels on images (flukes, dorsal ridge, plankton). Backmatter provides general information on marine biologists, what they do, and how to train to be one. There’s also a quick review of how Maggie and her group’s actions correspond to the scientific method. (This book was reviewed digitally.) A highly simplified but inviting overview of marine biology. (suggested reading) (Informational picture book. 4-7) Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.