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'Smoking Stinks!!'

A new book makes a big "stink" about smoking! The book is sure to entertain kids while sending out a clear anti-smoking message.

Smoking Stinks Book Cover

Author Kim Gosselin dedicates her new book to the three grandfathers she knew growing up.

Grandpa "K" smoked cigars and tobacco in a pipe. He died from lung cancer.
Grandpa "G" smoked cigarettes. He died from smoking-related heart disease.
"Little" Grandpa chewed tobacco and smoked cigarettes. He passed away from lung cancer and emphysema.

It's a fitting "Dedication" for a book dedicated to getting out to children the message that smoking is dangerous.


Smoking Stinks!! is a perfect read-aloud for the Great American Smokeout or for any day!

The message of the book (Smoking Stinks!!) is hardly subliminal! It's very clear—without being preachy. While reading Smoking Stinks!!, kids'll get a dose of smoking-related terminology too. Children will be exposed to words such as nicotine and emphysema and bronchitis. And they'll be introduced to important facts about the dangers of tobacco—all kinds of tobacco. Important words and phrases will stick in readers' minds . . . Nicotine is POISON . . . It's a powerful DRUG . . . SMOKING STINKS!!

This is a book kids will read over and over, each time absorbing more of the important message it includes.


Maddie and Alex know first-hand how smoking is affecting them. Maddie can't sleep at night because of Grandpa Norman's cough, and her allergies always seem to get worse when Grandpa Norman smokes. Alex's house smells like a chimney and, due to his asthma, he has a harder time breathing when he has to inhale the smoke from his mother's cigarettes.

Maddie and Alex decide to work together on a health report for school about smoking. They learn there are many dangers from smoking, both for those who smoke and those around them who get the secondhand smoke. They learn about the effects of smoke -- the sicknesses that can result and even the "outer" effects like the stains on Grandpa Norman's teeth and fingers, and the smell of smoke everywhere.

When it is time for Maddie and Alex to present their report to the class, they invite Grandpa Norman and his doctor, Dr. Parkin, to be guest speakers. They show the class pictures of healthy and unhealthy lungs and tell them about the dangers of secondhand smoke and chewing tobacco. Grandpa Norman even brings his nightshirt to school for them to smell.

Grandpa Norman admits to the children that he started smoking because he thought it was cool and all his friends smoked. He says his nicotine addiction keeps him from being able to quit. "There's nothing good about smoking," Grandpa Norman tells the class. "The smartest thing you kids can do is to NEVER start." He then pledges to himself, Maddie, Dr. Parkin, and the whole class to quit smoking.


Dr. C. Everett Koop is one of the biggest fans of Smoking Stinks!!

It's not surprising that medical professionals would jump on the bandwagon, but support has come from many other sources. Indeed, any educator and anyone who has lost a loved one to smoking-related causes is bound to approve.

Among the book's other cheerleaders are Rosie O'Donnell and Patrick Reynolds. Reynolds, grandson of R.J. Reynolds and president of The Foundation for a Smoke-free America, knows first-hand about the dangers of smoking. He watched his father and his older brother die of cigarette-caused diseases.

"'Smoking Stinks!! is a vital tool in teaching our children the dangers of tobacco use," says Reynolds. "This terrific book should be in every child's library and in every school."

I couldn't have said it better!

Smoking Stinks!! is written by Kim Gosselin, with color illustrations by Thom Buttner. See an Education World story about other books by Kim Gosselin, including Taking Asthma to School and Taking Diabetes to School.

Article by Gary Hopkins
Education World® Editor-in-Chief
Copyright © 1997 Education World

Last updated: 10/28/2016