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Books mentioned in the October 2012 issue of Nonfiction Notes from the Horn Book

Government, Politics, and Leaders Brezina, Corona America‘s Recession: The Effects of Economic Downturn [Headlines! series] High school   64 pp.   Rosen   2011 Library binding ISBN 978-1-4488-1296-7 Systems of Government series Connolly, Sean Communism Middle school   48 pp.   Smart Apple   2012 Library binding ISBN 978-1-59920-802-2 Connolly, Sean Democracy Middle school   48 pp.   Smart Apple   2012 […]

Language Arts


Berkes, Marianne Animalogy: Animal Analogies Gr. K-3   32 pp. Sylvan Dell 2011 Illustrated by Cathy Morrison. This animal-themed book introduces analogies: “Amphibian is to frog / as mammal is to moose.” Whether illustrating verbs or nouns, the crisp language features accurate syntax, and rhymes on the alternate pages work well. Vivid illustrations of animals in natural […]

After-School Fun

Top 25 Baseball Skills, Tips, and Tricks

Aretha, David Top 25 Baseball Skills, Tips, and Tricks Gr. 4-6   48 pp. Enslow 2011 Savage, Jeff Top 25 Gymnastics Skills, Tips, and Tricks Gr. 4-6   48 pp. Enslow 2011 Savage, Jeff Top 25 Hockey Skills, Tips, and Tricks Gr. 4-6   48 pp. Enslow 2011 Savage, Jeff Top 25 Soccer Skills, Tips, and Tricks Gr. 4-6   48 pp. Enslow […]

The Arts

13 Painters Children Should Know

Heine, Florian 13 Painters Children Should Know Gr. 4-6  48 pp. Prestel 2012 This large-format volume provides a thorough overview of some of history’s most influential painters, organized chronologically from Hieronymus Bosch to Basquiat. Captioned high-quality images of masterpieces support the informational text, which addresses styles, backgrounds, and inspirations; engaging personal details and anecdotes are also […]

Dinosaurs and Prehistoric Life

When Dinos Dawned

Bonner, Hannah When Dinos Dawned, Mammals Got Munched, and Pterosaurs Took Flight: A Cartoon Prehistory of Life in the Triassic Gr. 4-6   48 pp. National (National Geographic Books) 2012 Bonner combines excellent scientific explanations with slapstick humor to explore the development of early dinosaur, reptile, and mammal life in the Triassic period, as well as the […]


I, Gallileo

Christensen, Bonnie I, Galileo Gr. K-3   40 pp. Knopf (Random House Children’s Books) 2012 More straightforward if less individual than Peter Sis’s Starry Messenger, this is an excellent introduction to the scientist. The illustrations not only give geographical and historical context for Galileo’s ideas and experiments but also convey the arc of the narrative. Diagrams illustrating […]

Experiments and Science Projects


Bardhan-Quallen, Sudipta Kitchen Science Experiments: How Does Your Mold Garden Grow? Gr. 4-6 64 pp. Sterling 2010 Illustrated by Edward Miller. Mad Science series. Experiments exploring onion cells, yeast, bacteria, and mold found in homes are interspersed with scientific information about the underlying biological and chemical principles. The experiments are more advanced than your typical […]

Pollution and Conservation

Can We Save the Tiger

Ferguson, Rebecca The Role of the Individual High school 144 pp. Greenhaven 2011 Henningfeld, Diane Andrews Nature and Wildlife High school 136 pp. Greenhaven 2011 Langwith, Jacqueline Population, Resources, and Conflict High school 124 pp. Greenhaven 2011 Miller, Debra A. Farming and the Food Supply High school 135 pp. Greenhaven 2011 Streissguth, Tom The Role […]

Common Ground

Common Core State Standards Logo

As a historian, author, and longtime advocate for nonfiction, there are many things I like about the Common Core English/Language Arts Standards: their focus on historiography and authorial point of view, their mission of training young people to be problem-solvers, their validation of nonfiction-lovers’ passion for the genre. In this inaugural issue of Nonfiction Notes […]

World Cultures

If the World Were a Village

Bowler, Ann Martin, illus. by Soosoonam Barg. All About Korea: Stories, Songs, Crafts and More Gr. 4-6 64 pp. Tuttle 2011 Moore, Willamarie, illustrated by Kazumi Wilds. All About Japan: Stories, Songs, Crafts and More Gr. 4-6 64 pp. Tuttle 2011 Each book provides brief information about history, language, religion, celebrations, food, homes, traditional clothing, […]