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BOYS ONLY by Martin Oliver

BOYS ONLY

How to Survive Anything

By Martin Oliver (Author) , Simon Ecob (Illustrator) , Hannah Cohen (Editor)

Age Range: 8 - 12

Pub Date: May 1st, 2012
ISBN: 978-0-545-43096-8
Publisher: Scholastic

A slender, graphically formatted survival guide in the vein of Conn Iggulden’s The Dangerous Book for Boys (2007) and Dominqiue Enright’s The Boy’s Book (2007).

A gracious plenty of short how-tos for any young man—how to survive a zombie attack, a snake bite or a raging Tyrannosaurus rex, among others—in an easily digestible comic-book format. Some of the vignettes offer pretty common-sense information that assumes little of its reader: The final piece of imparted wisdom for surviving a whiteout, for example, is, “[i]f conditions worsen, head for shelter again and wait it out.” Others actually provide some interesting ideas, like how to create a floatation device out of a pair of pants in the event of a plane crash. Liberally peppered with factual information, some practical advice and a dash of humor, the non-linear composition will easily entice casual browsers with its short episodes. What is most puzzling however, is the classification of this book: Though obviously nonfiction, there is no source material to back up provided facts nor any additional bibliography of books or Web resources for interested young aficionados to follow up. With something so obviously geared toward hesitant readers, it would seem self-evident to provide supplementary reading to keep budding interests piqued.

Take this for what it is: a cute, quick offering, with likely appeal to even the most reluctant young boys. (Graphic nonfiction. 8-12)