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Secret Coders: Paths & Portals

Today it’s time for something a little bit different! Many of you know that I’m a graduate student (for one more year!) in computer science and biology. Therefore, when I was approached about joining in the Reading Without Walls blog tour, I couldn’t say no. I’ve been interested in Secret Coders for a while, but had never had the chance to read it. I’m really glad that I finally did, along with a couple more STEM comic books :D. If you have a kid in your life, I highly recommend these three great books!

Paths & Portals 1

secret_codersSecret Coders

This is the first book of the series (to which Paths & Portals is the sequel) and it introduces us to Hopper, the new girl at Stately Academy. As you can tell from the cover, there are robots hidden around this Academy and what you can’t tell is that this comic book uses an actual computer language! It’s a pretty old and simple computer language, but as a programmer, I was entertained to spot conventions we still use today. They also present problems that the characters need to solve and give the reader a chance to figure them out first, which would be a great activity for a young reader.

paths_portalsPaths & Portals

Secret Coders does end on a bit of a cliffhanger, so I was happy to have the sequel immediately to hand ;-). In this sequel, we get more awesome programming as Hopper and friends figure out how to get the ‘turtle’ to draw different patterns and unlock secret rooms at the Academy. I also found there to be a nice balance of visualizing what the program did and showing how a programmer thinks while still allowing for a fun story. I will definitely be giving my copies to a certain budding scientist I know!

coral_reefsScience Comics: Coral Reefs

Finally, I had to grab Coral Reefs. Some of my research is on simulating corals and the micro-organisms that help them live, so I always like learning more about the amazing variety of corals and sea creatures living around them. The art in this one is just beautiful with great drawings of lots of different species and explanations for how they are related and how you can tell. Definitely recommended for any child excited about animals and the ocean.

As a scientist, getting the science I love into the hands of children is so important to me and it pains me when I hear that kids aren’t interested in what I love. I’m really happy to see accessible comic books like these three coming out to hook young readers and even adults. I learned a few new things about coral reefs and I think I’m going to need to get a copy of Dinosaurs next!

Check out the rest of the blog tour!

August 31Colby at Sharp Read
September 1Jess at Reading Nook Reviews
September 2: Samantha at Forest of Words and Pages
September 5: Jennifer at YA Book Nerd
September 6: Maria at Maria’s Mélange
September 7: Gigi at Late Bloomer’s Book Blog
September 8: Jen at Starry Eyed Revue
September 9: Cheyenne at The Hollow Cupboards
September 12: Anya at On Starships and Dragonwings
September 13: April at Good Books and Good Wine
September 14: Cindy at Charting by the Stars
September 15: Erica at The Book Cellar
September 16: Sandie at Teen Lit Rocks
September 19: Asheley at Into the Hall of Books
September 20: Daphne at Gone Pecan
September 21: Mary Ann at Great Kids Books
September 22: Kathy at The Brain Lair
September 23: Michelle & Leslie at Undeniably (Book) Nerdy
September 26: Laurie at Reader Girls
September 27: Margie at Librarian’s Quest
September 28: Victoria at Art, Books, & Coffee
September 29: Cee at The Novel Hermit
September 30: Amanda at Forever Young Adult

Anya from On Starships and Dragonwings-Anya

© 2016, Anya. All rights reserved.

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