Readers interested in the value Muslim civilizations have added to our global village will be hard-pressed to find a more...




With this compendium, National Geographic has developed a book that’s as packed with information as an encyclopedia but as much fun to read as a comic book.

From chess to clocks, surgery to windmills, astronomy to running water and universities, this book brings to light the ways in which Muslim civilizations of the past laid the foundations for many of the modern conveniences we take for granted today. Many in the West assume that the greatest ideas have come from the Western world, but this book blows that misconception out of the water, and it also shows that the world is smaller than we think, with ideas and inventions moving from one part of the world to another throughout history. Each two-page spread bears a title such as “15 Head-Turning Fashion Facts,” “50 Fresh Facts about Keeping Clean,” or “50 Facts about Exploration” and is covered with interesting and often surprising facts organized in attractive boxes of different colors with spot illustrations throughout. A selection of further resources include interactive websites and a traveling exhibit. Fun for browsing or as a point of departure for deep exploration and research, this book has something for every interest.

Readers interested in the value Muslim civilizations have added to our global village will be hard-pressed to find a more stimulating introduction than this one. (glossary, index) (Nonfiction. 8-16)

Pub Date: Dec. 11, 2012

ISBN: 978-1-4263-1258-8

Page Count: 96

Publisher: National Geographic Kids

Review Posted Online: July 26, 2017

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A splendid volume for young adventurers.



Based on her work with middle-school students, Long offers lessons on how to stay healthy and out of trouble while awaiting rescue, the same lessons taught to adults in her survival classes.

Her matter-of-fact, no-nonsense tone will play well with young readers, and the clear writing style is appropriate to the content. The engaging guide covers everything from building shelters to avoiding pigs and javelinas. With subjects like kissing bugs, scorpions, snow blindness and “How going to the bathroom can attract bears and mountain lions,” the volume invites browsing as much as studying. The information offered is sometimes obvious: “If you find yourself facing an alligator, get away from it”; sometime humorous: Raccoons will “fight with your dog, steal all your food, then climb up a tree and call you bad names in raccoon language”; and sometimes not comforting: “When alligators attack on land, they usually make one grab at you; if they miss, you are usually safe.” But when survival is at stake, the more information the better, especially when leavened with some wit. An excellent bibliography will lead young readers to a host of fascinating websites, and 150 clipart-style line drawings complement the text.

A splendid volume for young adventurers. (index not seen) (Nonfiction. 9-14)

Pub Date: May 1, 2011

ISBN: 978-1-56976-708-5

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Chicago Review Press

Review Posted Online: April 5, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2011

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With breezy text and lively graphics featuring a mixed group of young people, this book answers its title question by discussing climate change, pollution, exploitation of natural resources, waste, hunger and the impact of human actions on wildlife. Topics are addressed in chapters titled with questions—“What’s the problem?” “But what about cars?” and “Why are trees important?”—and statements—“Boy, have we messed up!” The answers weave in historical background, clear explanations of the problems and some solutions. This is a more substantive treatment of the issues than its bouncy design might suggest. Sprinkled throughout are one-line eco-tips, summarized toward the end in “5 best ways to make a difference.” From time to time, boxes labeled “FACT!” offer interesting statistics and comparisons, although few sources are mentioned. A lengthy list of organizations and websites, a glossary (of words bolded in the text) and a useful index complete the package. First published in England, this emphasizes the need for international cooperation and offers a refreshing approach to a topic that is not going away. (Nonfiction. 10-14)

Pub Date: July 1, 2010

ISBN: 978-0-7641-4427-1

Page Count: 96

Publisher: Barron's

Review Posted Online: June 2, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2010

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