Children's Literature - Pat TrattlesHunger is one of the most problematic and puzzling social issues in the world today. Many in the developed world can pick and choose from a seemingly endless variety of foods from supermarket shelves. Meanwhile, hunger and malnutrition kill nearly six million children each year. Who is to blame when people go hungry? Are corrupt governments responsible for high hunger levels? Are there enough resources to feed all seven billion of the world's population? Can genetically altered crops help solve the world's hunger problem? Do farmers in developing countries benefit from fair trade? Can charities and benefit concerts, like "Live 8," solve our hunger crisis? These and many other issues are addressed in this book that is part of the "Voices" series from Smart Apple Media. It does not pretend to provide an answer to the hunger dilemma. Rather it uses statistics, charts, graphs, photographs, and text to present all sides of the issue in order to stimulate discussion and debate. What makes it stand out from other books on the same topic is its heavy reliance on first person accounts from experts in the field as well as those directly affected by hunger, including teens in Darfur, Burma, India, Haiti, and many other countries around the world. Also included: a timeline, glossary, comprehensive index, suggested books, and websites for further reading. Aimed at students in grade seven and above, this information packed volume will be a welcome addition to school and library shelves everywhere. Reviewer: Pat Trattles
School Library JournalGr 7-9–The chapter spreads in these volumes each pose an open-ended question. For example, in Hunger, topics range from “Can We Feed the World?” to “Can Charities Make a Real Difference?” The sharing of first-person perspectives makes these volumes good choices for classroom supplements, and their many color photographs will draw in browsers. However, the books’ hyperkinetic design, in which multiple typefaces and little white space lead to a cluttered look, mutes their impact. Except where the quotes come from previously published sources, they are unattributed beyond the names of the speakers, their ages, and their locations. Still, this series is a worthwhile resource, especially for students seeking a more immediate sense of current-event topics.
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