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Michael Dow
Nurse Florence®, What is a Heatstroke?
Michael Dow, author
Jean, Condi, and Sonia sit with Nurse Florence during lunch. They ask her to discuss an illness people may get more often with climate change. Nurse Florence discusses heatstroke and uses images from the internet to discuss the topic.
The latest installment in Dow’s educational Nurse Florence series takes a timely and important look at the health risks associated with climate change. In school, three young friends are learning about the impact of warming temperatures on society and the planet and discussing their concerns at lunch. Soon they spot helpful Nurse Florence, who is always eager to share her knowledge with the curious kids. She sweetly says that her day has gotten better “now that I’m talking to the three of you.” When the girls ask about health problems caused by climate change, Florence begins her deep dive on heatstroke, including what it is, what causes it, and how to prevent it.

Once again, Dow doesn’t shy away from technical terms, as one of his primary goals with these books is to introduce kids to science early in life and hopefully spark an interest in a healthcare career. Nurse Florence also provides practical tips that young people can put into practice immediately when playing outdoors on steamy days. With much of the planet experiencing longer, hotter springs and summers and unprecedented heatwaves, knowing how to dress for the weather, recognize the signs of heatstroke, and bring down someone’s body temperature can possibly help prevent an emergency.

Halton’s illustrations mostly show the expressive faces of the three girls and Nurse Florence as they converse, as well as diagrams elucidating what heatstroke does to the body and how someone suffering from the affliction might look. One picture, for instance, shows a nauseous woman holding her stomach and covering her mouth, while another shows a closeup of a person’s hands as they check their pulse. Florence’s welcoming and friendly demeanor highlights the power of positive adult influences in kids’ lives—all as she offers real-world solutions to a growing existential threat.

Takeaway: Three friends learn about heatstroke from their helpful school nurse.

Comparable Titles: Joe Schaffner and Sarah Tollett’s Not Even a Minute, Roserdley Sainvil’s My Nurse Has Superpowers.

Production grades
Cover: A-
Design and typography: B
Illustrations: A-
Editing: A-
Marketing copy: A