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Children's LiteratureThe format of this book is my favorite—graphic! This nonfiction book is about the great Chicago fire of 1871. There are four chapters in just 27 pages, and all major facts are well covered. I especially like the small boxes found on many of the pages that give a reason for why things did or did not work. It is almost like the author has guessed the questions the readers are probably asking themselves. For example, before a fire alarm could be sent, a key had to unlock the alarm box. Readers might ask themselves or the person reading the story, "Why in the world would they lock the alarm box?" The answer is provided and states that the fire alarm boxes were located in public places and were locked to prevent false alarms. At the end of the book the author includes two pages of additional information. In addition, there is a glossary, a "Read More" section, Internet sites, and a bibliography. This book is perfect for students who are reluctant readers and never seem to finish a book on their own. It is also a wonderful way to introduce nonfiction books to young people. The graphics are great and provide excellent accompaniment for the text. Graphic books are also perfect for the English as a second language student. Part of the "Graphic Library" series. 2006, Capstone Press, Ages 6 to 12.
—Kathie M. Josephs