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Children's LiteratureBeginning with the history of the U.S. Navy (up to the coalition remaining in Iraq in 2004), this title in the "U.S. Armed Forces" series provides information for the casual browser, the person considering joining up, boat and sea warfare buffs, and report writers. Four sections are included: History, Recruitment, Training, and Life in this particular branch. The recruitment section includes the specifications and preparation for admission to all levels of the Navy, what happens in each level, who pays for what, obligations upon finishing, and roles various people may take on. A page on uniforms, another on typical navy ships, fleet, and air power, a spread on insignias and what they indicate, a structural chart, and a timeline all provide concise information for the interested reader. Color photographs show men and women of many hues in many roles. The sidebars are a particularly compelling feature as they are substantial enough for the general reader but short enough to assist less able readers; topics include navy bells and what they mean, the battery of aptitude tests one takes in order to find the right field in the Navy, a page of firsts for women in the Navy, and the SEALS. End matter includes a glossary, timeline, biographical sketches of famous people in this branch of the service, further reading, bibliography, related websites, and an index. All in all, it is informative coverage of a high-interest topic, with a presentation that is sure to satisfy high school-aged potential recruits, as well as anyone else interested in the nuts and bolts of this branch of the armed forces. 2005, Lerner, Ages 12 to 16.
—Susan Hepler, Ph.D.