and 114 Other Questions
by New Scientist
Why Don't Penguins' Feet Freeze? are not uniform in quality. They're not written by the same author, or even by a team at the magazine. They're sent in by other readers, and vary quite a bit. (Some of them have impressive little list of credentials after their names, others just list their name and you wonder who they are or what they know). Quite often completely contradictory answers are printed next to each other and there are even some that are obviously making a joke of the whole thing. They did make me chuckle, and it was interesting to see different ways of explaining the same phenomenon, but a few times I was still left wondering which response was the most accurate. It didn't bother me too much, but other readers might find this uneven quality dissatisfying.
I want to see them answer the question about the hummingbird my sisters and I used to pose to each other as kids when we drove around in our large volkswagon van: if a hummingbird is hovering in the car and it takes off suddenly, will the bird keep moving along with the car or get smashed against the rear window? (I think this was mostly answered by the question in the book about how a floating balloon behaves in a moving car, but somehow I think a living creature powering itself, like a hummingbird, might act differently?)
rating: 3/5 ........212 pages, 2006