cover image The Last Straw: Kids vs. Plastics

The Last Straw: Kids vs. Plastics

Susan Hood, illus. by Christiane Engel. HarperCollins, $18.99 (48p) ISBN 978-0-06-298139-4

In this factually augmented poetry collection, Hood illuminates the reasons, repercussions, and remedies for humans’ considerable use of plastic. She begins with “Fantastic Plastic,” which presents a rhetorical question: “Where would the world be without [plastic]?” But subsequent poems, such as “Plastic for Dinner?” highlight the consequences of its use. Solutions are offered in the forms of couplet-based “Ban the Bag” (“Cloth and canvas can’t be beat!”) and “Ode to Jellyfish” (their mucus “may be the solution to plastic pollution!”), among others. Prose paragraphs supplement with additional information, including real-life people in the fight against plastics, and Engel’s vivid, inclusive digital illustrations bolster this appealingly accessible picture book. Front matter includes an introduction by Milo Cress, founder of Be Straw Free, and back matter includes an author’s note, timeline of the history of plastics and its projected future, and additional resources. Ages 4–8. (Feb.)