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FLASH FACTS (2021) Review

DC Comics FLASH FACTS an incredibly fun, vibrant learning experience for all readers. Diligently crafted and created, it’s a must year for 8-12’s and adults alike.

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Flash Facts (DC Comics)

Published by DC Comics, Flash Facts is curated by The Big Bang Theory star Mayim Bialik. Writers include Amy Chu, Sholly Fisch, Darian and Varian Johnson. Artwork comes from Ile Gonzalez, Isaac Goodhart, Erich Owen and Vic Regis. Available now in print and on digital where all good comic books are sold.

Synopsis

Have you ever wondered what’s at the bottom of the sea? Why polar ice melts? Or which tools forensic scientists use to solve a crime?
Well look no further! Everyone’s favorite Scarlet Speedster is here to answer all your burning questions! Barry Allen, with the help of some of his close friends, will take readers on an exciting journey that examines everything from the vast expanse of our galaxy to the smallest living organism known to man.  
Curated by award-winning actress and author Mayim Bialik, PhD, and featuring stories created by an all-star cast of writers and illustrators, this anthology aligns with Next Generation Science Standards and provides a helpful bridge between the lessons taught inside the classroom and our everyday lives.

Review

I feel like I start every one of my DC Comics YA book reviews by saying the publisher is crushing it with this line. They’ve proven time and time again that they can take characters from the wider universe and pitch them perfectly at a younger audience lacking in decades of character knowledge.

Flash Facts is something new from DC and curator Mayim Bialik (The Big Bang Theory). Instead of a traditional story, Flash Facts is a collection of shorter volumes each aimed at educating 8-12 year olds around the subjects of STEM. To the uninitiated, as I was, STEM means Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. What Bialik and the team do here is present STEM topics from the point of view of characters from the DC Universe. I have to admit even at my advanced age I still learned a thing or two from Batman, The Flash and others.

The book be split in to a number of chapters, each headlined by a different character and each tackling a different subject matter. Characters have been specially selected so that stories sit neatly within their skillset which is just one of many examples of how Flash Facts is both an important tool and a book which is truly derived from the DC Universe.

Concepts range from forensic science with Barry Allen, 3D printing with Batman to psychics with Mary Marvel and Ryan Choi. Bringing in various writers and artists give individual chapters and individual feel and aesthetic. Each is perfectly crafted to teach the reader through the voices of the characters. Lessons are never heavy handed and the added activities enhance the learning experience through some DC-themed fun.

Barry Allen offers up a chance for the reader to analyse a crime scene to identify the crook. It brilliants ties in the science with The Flash’s criminal investigation and ensures the reader leaves the chapter with a working knowledge of the science. I can’t think of a more entertaining way to pair STEM learning with comic book action.

Flash Facts is bookended with some sweet, touching words from Mayim Bialik. Opening with her experience of growing up with comics and with science. Ending with some brilliant reflections on what the book has accomplished. Bialik helps ensure the delicate balance between character and education but also makes sure the book is enticing to reader of all genders.

Verdict

Flash Facts is an incredibly fun, vibrant learning experience for all readers. Diligently crafted and created, it’s a must year for 8-12’s and adults alike.


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