Children's Literature - Pat TrattlesPeople have fought and waged war ever since the beginning of time. Why do people start wars? Can good ever come from a war, or is it just a waste of human lives and money? Should children be forced to fight in wars? Is war ever justified? Should weapons of mass destruction ever be used? Will there come a time when there are no wars? These and many other issues are addressed in this book which is part of the "Voices" series from Smart Apple Media. It does not pretend to provide an answer to the war 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 war, including teens in Iraq, the Congo, Darfur, Yugoslavia, Bosnia, and many other war torn countries around the world. In addition to statistics, charts, graphs, photographs, and short, information packed text, it includes a timeline, glossary, comprehensive index, suggested books, and websites for further reading. Aimed at students in grade seven and above, this 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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