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Reviewed by Lois J Wickstrom for Readers' Favorite
Have you ever wondered why you feel hungry? No matter how long you want to sleep, something also makes you want to get up and eat. A Very Hungry Tale, written and illustrated by Suzanne Fantar, explains what’s going on inside your body to make your tummy gurgle, wakes you up, and puts your feet on the floor to take you to the breakfast table. Three hormones (a type of chemical that your body makes) coordinate to make you hungry and digest your food. They work together to keep you up and running so you can play and have fun. Insulin, ghrelin, and neuropeptide Y all become active when the glucose (sugar in your blood) gets too low. This tale follows school-girl Anna on a weekend when she doesn’t have to get up early and catch the school bus. She wants to sleep in, but her body knows it needs food, and her hormones do their job to keep her healthy.
This may seem an unusual topic for a picture book. But curious children want to know why about everything. That includes gurgling in the tummy and those hungry feelings they get first thing in the morning. Suzanne Fantar’s illustrations and text in A Very Hungry Tale show hormones in action running from the tummy to the brain and around Anna’s body. This tale explains what the hormones do and how the brain coordinates them. The result is that Anna gets up, goes to the kitchen, eats her breakfast, and then has enough energy to go outside and play. Young curious readers will want to check out the glossary at the back that has even more information about this process.