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Our Latest Reviews

Rookie Read-About Safety
A brief note to parents and teachers at the beginning of each book suggests how to address the topic with a child; for example, in Stranger Safety, the author says, “Make sure your child understands that behavior that would normally be considered unacceptable–such as kicking, biting, and fibbing–is acceptable, even advisable, when dealing with strangers.” Each book has bright, clear, contemporary photographs that are attractive, abundant, and relevant to each situation. The large, readable texts include a balance of dos and don’ts. All of the titles conclude with a summary of safety tips and a “Words to Know” section that pictorially represents four important terms having to do with that topic, such as “fire,” “firefighter,” “smoke alarm,” and “toaster” in Fire Safety. Accessible titles to spark discussion.

- School Library Journal, March 2013

Titles in this series include Back-to-School Safety, Bicycle Safety, Car Safety, Fire Safety, Internet Safety, and Stranger Safety

Rookie Read-About Science –
How Things Are Made
Carefully avoiding any references to specific brands, these engaging introductions follow common products from farm (or forest) through each major manufacturing step. One-to-five sentence-long explanations (e.g., “Milk is needed to make ice cream. Milk comes from cows.”) accompany the bright, full-page or larger, captioned color photos. Challenging vocabulary words are set apart in bold fonts and defined in the glossaries, which also contain pronunciation guides. “Fun Fact!” text boxes contain interesting asides, such as “Americans use about three bottles of ketchup per person each year.” The level of detail is well suited to new readers, and each stage is recapped in a chart at the end of every volume. More information is available on a dedicated page on the publisher’s website.

- School Library Journal, April 2013

Titles in this series include Beans to Chocolate, Milk to Ice Cream, Tomatoes to Ketchup, and Trees to Paper

The 100 Year Starship (A True Book: Dr.
Mae Jemison and 100 Year Starship™)
Enhanced with high-quality color photos, this title in the True Book: Dr. Mae Jemison and 100 Year Starship series describes the 100YSS initiative to make interstellar space travel possible for humans. Jemison, the book’s coauthor and world’s first woman of color in space, will lead the initiative. The thorough yet accessible text reveals that designing a starship is no easy task, explaining the difficulties in creating enough chemical fuel to power the spacecraft, as well as the challenges of protecting humans from radiation, extreme temperatures, and lack of oxygen. And what about living inside the starship? A final chapter addresses how advancements in starship technology, such as alternative fuel sources and conservation of natural resources, could benefit life on earth. Intermittent facts and concluding statistics keep readers engaged and looking to the stars.

- Booklist, April 1, 2013

The Superstorm Hurricane Sandy
(A True Book: Disasters)
Superstorm Sandy captured the headlines in the fall of 2012, and while the front pages have been relinquished to other stories, its effects are still being felt in many communities. This book provides enough detail to paint a vivid picture without unnecessarily scaring young readers, many of whom may have experienced the storm firsthand. The first chapter traces the storm’s origin and path through the Caribbean nations. Gregory provides a strong sense of context, listing the damage and casualties Sandy caused in each country, including the plight of the Haitians still homeless from the 2010 earthquake. The rest of the book is dedicated to the impact on the Northeast, from President Obama’s emergency declaration on October 28, through the major news stories (including the presidential campaign), to the cleanup and recovery efforts. The captioned color photographs are plentiful, but small. Maps, side boxes about other catastrophic North American hurricanes (including Katrina), and a statistics page add detail; defined bold vocabulary words with pronunciations in a glossary and an index will aid researchers too young for primary sources.

- School Library Journal, May 2013

The Ancient World
Each book begins with the history of a culture from origin to demise, and proceeds to topics such as religion, laws, social customs, homes, family, politics, economy, warfare, and education. A chapter is devoted to geography and develops critical thinking skills by explaining how weather, climate, land features, and natural resources shaped the peoples’ practices. Each links the ancient world to contemporary times by discussing what the culture contributed to modern life. The books also explain how modern scientists continually learn about ancient cultures through the discovery of artifacts. Every spread has color photographs; each volume also includes brief biographies of notable people and an illustrated timeline of critical events. These books will supplement history and social studies classes and will also appeal to independent readers interested in the ancient world. Glossary. Recommended

- Library Media Connection, August/Sept 2013

Titles in this series include Ancient Aztecs, Ancient China, Ancient Egypt, Ancient Greece, Ancient Incas, Ancient India, Ancient Maya, Ancient Mesopotamia, and Ancient Rome

Enchantment of the World,
Second Series
The countryside of these nations is depicted in this series. Each book starts with a general overview that flows into the geography and climate of the country. History, government and the country’s future follow. The last part of each book deals with the culture, religion, daily life and ethnicities. Additional facts as well as details on important sites, people, and problems are included. “Fast Facts” include all the basic information needed for country reports. There is a list of books and DVDs for more information, as well as access to online information. There are excellent color photos throughout the books and quality b&w historic photos as well. Index. Recommended

- Library Media Connection, August/Sept 2013

Titles in this series included in this review include The Bahamas, England, Greece, Pakistan, Russia, and Spain