So there's a clear trend in some of these complex topics toward the illustrated book, rather than the picturebook format. This is the former. Copious illustrations are fully complementary or corresponding to the text, with each picture intended to be an example of something discussed in the text. This is an interesting convention, because in 21st century literacy, we should be expecting to see the arrow turn the other way --shifting to the visual being the primary 'text' to read. It's more likely to see this in picturebooks--I'm thinking of Molly Bang's plankton book.
This book drew Pearl right in because of the title--it's very clever. She browsed in the book for a little bit and then we had some conversations. This was fun to see, because it confirmed what Kim Bontempo was teaching us about digital reading--that it encourages browsing behavior, moving around a text, not a linear read from start to end. I suspect that magazine reading style (in particular I think of National Geographic browsing), has a lot to do with the emerging formats of informational text. This book supports browsing but is still organized as a linear presentation.
Sources: In the author's note Decristofano describes the extensive use of science magazines, which led her to professional science journals. None of these show up in her sources, only a few of the books and internet sites. Again, I realize this is often about what editors ask for, but she spent a whole two pages trying to tell us about her credibility and then not actually providing the information that makes her credible. Editors need to know that this is tantamount to 'hiding your work'. Authors need to know that when editors are stupid about this, that they need to provide a link to an alternate place where all the actual sources can be found. If teachers want to help kids see authentic science text, they need to have a trail that leads them to this authentic text!