Philip Bunting, Superpower, Hardie Grant Children’s Publishing, September 2021, 32 pp., RRP $24.99 (hbk), ISBN 9781760507930
In Superpower, Phillip Bunting has again taken a complex and potentially dry non-fiction topic and made it kid friendly. This time the topic is renewable energy: what it is, how we get it, and why we need it. This book covers a lot of information, including a history of human energy use, electricity, climate change, ways to reduce energy use, and detail on a variety of renewable energy sources including wind, solar, nuclear and biofuels.
Superpower manages to simplify a very complex topic to be not only comprehensible, but also entertaining. The written text is enhanced with explanatory illustrations and broken up with humour. The illustrations are recognisable in Phillip Bunting’s graphic style, with each energy source getting a cute ‘character’ (who would have thought fossil fuels could look cute!). The structure and layout are logical and easy to navigate.
Superpower is most suitable for children aged 8 and older. It would make a fantastic addition to classrooms and school libraries. It will appeal to children with an interest in science, sustainability, and the environment. Superpower was listed as a CBCA Notable book in 2022, along with two other titles by Phillip Bunting.
Reviewed by Laura Holloway