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Children's LiteratureIf you are among the one-in-five in the US who suffers from allergies, then you will certainly relate to this book. If you are lucky enough not to have allergies, then this book will help you understand what causes allergies, how serious they can be, and how people who suffer from them often feel. The text does an excellent job of explaining and showing through text and photographs the various types of allergens and all that is related to allergies. While we might try, there is no way to completely avoid allergens and no sure way to alleviate the symptoms of an allergic reaction. The effects may be like the common cold, or so severe that a person can die. Food allergies are very common, as are allergies to plants and animals. Insect stings can be another very dangerous source of allergic reaction, and in my case and that of others, potentially fatal. For many like me, the best protection is to keep an epinephrine pen handy. Historians speculate that one of the Egyptian pharaohs actually died from a wasp sting. The history of the study of allergies and allergic reactions is clearly explained, and the text for the most part can be read and understood by a young audience. The scientific information presented will make them stretch a bit, but that is not a negative. The book is a good choice for any library, and is part of the "Health Alert" series. It has a good glossary, list of books to find out more (although the most current one on the list was published in 2000), an index, and web sites for further research. 2006, Marshall Cavendish, Ages 8 up.