Argh! There’s a Skeleton Inside You! (Idan Ben-Barak & Julian Frost, A&U)
Quog and Oort are two aliens. Quog is blobby and green; Oort is a pink gas cloud with three eyes. While on their way to a mate’s birthday their purple spaceship breaks down. They need a hand to help them get started on their journey again—specifically, the reader’s hand. Argh! There’s a Skeleton Inside You! is a picture book that requires young ones to interact with the characters, to wave to them and assist them with simple tasks (like pushing a button). But because Quog and Oort are aliens they have to be taught about the human body. Quog has the ability to grow limbs but he has to be told that there are bones inside the skin to keep ‘your body nice and straight’ otherwise you’ll just wobble about like jelly. Readers also learn about muscles and nerves and how they are connected to the skeleton. Idan Ben-Barak and Julian Frost’s book is a basic science primer for preschoolers to early primary schoolers. The colours are garishly bright and the pages are large (with the text almost too small). Quog and Oort themselves are endearing and sweet. With just the hand held up for inspection, hopefully the book will inspire budding scientists to learn more about the rest of the human body.
Thuy On is a freelance arts journalist and reviewer, and the books editor of the Big Issue