THE NEWS HOUNDS IN THE GREAT BALLOON RACE by Amy Axelrod

THE NEWS HOUNDS IN THE GREAT BALLOON RACE

A Geography Adventure
Age Range: 6 - 9
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KIRKUS REVIEW

The first in the News Hounds geography series opens with chatty instructions from Axelrod (Pigs on the Ball, 1998, etc.) on how to read the book—first for fun, and then for education. Instructions, and the need to instruct, may be the book’s main flaw. The book earnestly assures parents and teachers that the series has been designed around five fundamental themes set forth by the National Council of Geography Education and the Association of American Geographers. Any readers still left in the room can then begin the story, involving press coverage of a hot-air balloon race in Texas by a roving three-person TV news team, all of them dogs. Gear packed, the reporters hop into the news van, which is driven by the weather girl, a golden retriever with long, silky ears, who in a nifty bit of sexist characterization stops to shop. They get to the airfield in time to shoot opening footage and anchorman Isaac reels off copy that will tax beginning readers. There is more, but this kind of book may put readers off geography permanently. (Picture book. 6-9)

Pub Date: March 1st, 2000
ISBN: 0-689-82409-2
Page count: 40pp
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1st, 2000