Thursday, January 30, 2014

Great Non Fiction for Kids

Remember when I said that Thursday was for graphic novels and non fiction books.  Bet you thought I would forget about that non fiction part.  I mean really, graphic novels are just so much more ... exciting .... action filled ..... comic!

Well my friends, think again.  Today I have a book that will challenge you assumptions on .. yawn ... the non fiction genre.  It might not be easy to get your child to pick it up, but when they do they will be blown away by the excitement that real life has to offer.

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Title:       Eruption:Volcanoes and the Science of Saving Lives

Author:   Elizbeth Rusch

Target:    Grades 4 and up

What this book is about: 
Unless you live close to a volcano, you may never realize the devastation that can occur when these giants erupt.  In fact, even if you live at the base of a volcano, you may take the risk, knowing that an eruption may not take place for a hundred years or more.  But when they do blow, the effects can wipe out tens of thousands of people and destroy entire villages.  Thankfully there are teams of scientists who study these volcanoes and continue to hone their knowledge so that they can predict eruptions and save lives.  But it isn’t easy and the risk of being wrong can be devastating.

Why I love this book: 
I am not a huge nonfiction gal, but this book absolutely blew me away (ok .. pun not intended but so appropriate.)  I never really understood the power of these volcanoes and this book reads like an action/adventure novel at times.  The stunning photographs and narrative take you through how quickly things can happen as you read this book on the edge of your seat.

The one problem with this book is that it is laid out like a nonfiction book instead of a story.  As a result the appeal of the story does not jump out at the reader until they have invested some time in the book.  Most kids will feel, at first glance, that it is more like a textbook and may shy away from reading it.

Who this book is for:
If you can get your child to read it, really I think most kids will be fascinated by the many eruptions described in this story.  I stuck it my son’s hands and once he got into it he brought in the car with him to finish the book.  He didn’t want to put it down.  For kids interested in science, the more technical aspects are also well done.

Final thoughts:  
Some of the photos in this book, especially the flows from the 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo, are absolutely gasp inducing.  You will never look at volcanoes the same way again.

To purchase this book:
Click on the following link to connect to Amazon: Eruption!: Volcanoes and the Science of Saving Lives (Scientists in the Field Series)  A portion of each purchase goes to support this blog at no cost to you.

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