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Three Reasons to Read I Am Smoke

A Review of I am Smoke

Author: Henry Herz

Illustrator: Mercè López

Publisher: Tilbury House Publishers

Year: 2021

JACKET COPY: “I lack a mouth, but I can speak. I lack hands, but I can push out unwanted guests. I’m gentler than a feather, but I can cause harm."

When smoke speaks, its messages swirl and shift like smoke itself—playful, challenging, devious. Smoke has been borne aloft from flames, and its elements returned to earth, since before recorded time. Its cycles never end. Smoke was here before us. It helps us when we’re wise but hurts us when we’re careless. Do not treat me lightly, it seems to warn us. This is the story of smoke. “

This surprising story of smoke will ignite fascination with this element and show the many ways this shapeless figure has helped shape our history and our lives. From this unique, but truthful, point of view, the reader will gain a new perspective on this misunderstood creature.


1. It's a STEM topic, it's current, and it's historical. It's helpful and yet dangerous. It's an amazing topic to read about and ponder.

2. This book is truly creative in its approach to a non-fiction topic and the personification is accurate and interesting.

3. It's an eye-opening study of Point of View.

I am honestly super impressed with this engaging portrayal of a topic that doesn't seem all that compelling on its face! But wow -- there was much to learn and appreciate. It definitely changed my perspective on the topic. Books that change the way we look at things are invaluable!

Purchase I Am Smoke here:

REVIEW BY: Lynne Marie

Lynne Marie is the author of Hedgehog Goes to Kindergarten -- art by Anne Kennedy (Scholastic 2011), Hedgehog's 100th Day of School -- art by Lorna Hussey (Scholastic 2017), The Star of the Christmas Play -- art by Lorna Hussey (Beaming Books 2018), Moldilocks and the 3 Scares -- art by David Rodriguez Lorenzo (Sterling 2019 and Scholastic 2019), Let’s Eat! Mealtime Around the World -- art by Parwinder Singh (Beaming Books 2019), The Three Little Pigs and the Rocket Project -- art by Wendy Fedan (Mac and Cheese Press, December 2021) and American Pie -- art by Dea Lenihan (Dancing Flamingo Press 2022).

She’s also the Owner and Administrator of both (which is currently taking 2022 Members at and, as well as a long-time Travel Agent with (! She's been a Cybil's Judge in the Fiction Picture Books and Board Books category since 2016. Recently, she's been handed the ReFoReMo torch from Kirsti Call and Carrie Charley Brown, which will return under it's new name March On With Mentor Texts in March, 2022 ( You can join her at her weekly Tinker and Talk Book Chat here: Tinker and Talk Book Chat by The Picture Book Mechanic | Facebook

When she’s not searching for stories all over the globe, she lives on a lake in South Florida with her family, a Schipperke named Anakin and several resident water birds. Visit her at Lynne Marie is represented by Marisa Cleveland of



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