This book, part of the "Indigenous Peoples" series, teaches readers about the people who live in the Kalahari Desert. The author explains the history of the Bushmen, how they live in their harsh environment, and what the future might hold for them. Each page has color pictures that correspond well with the text. A color map is also included to help readers locate the Kalahari Desert. Sidebars are scattered throughout the book. These sidebars tell legends, explain cultural facts and ideas, and give a timeline. Watson also shows how each band of Bushmen is different. The information is presented in an appealing way that will help readers doing school reports. The book also contains a glossary, index, further reading, and web sites. Another good book is the Kalahari Bushmen by Alan Barnard in the "Threatened Cultures" series. 2005, Weigl Publishers Inc, Ages 8 to 12.
Gr 4-8-While the peoples covered here are certainly worthy of study, these books read more like fairly decent term papers than material worth purchasing. The facts tend to be repeated several times throughout, and there is some discrepancy in the vocabulary used. In Bushmen, for example, the author notes that the term "Bushman" is often considered an insulting term and yet it is used throughout. The strength here is the beautiful photos on every page that give readers a glimpse into the culture and life of these people. Considering that there is a real lack of nonfiction for young people addressing the history and daily lives of these indigenous groups, the books might fill a niche, and the glossaries and suggested Web sites could be used for further study. If your library has a significant need for materials that explore various cultures, you may want to overlook the flaws and invest in these titles.-Genevieve Gallagher, Murray Elementary School, Charlottesville, VA Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.