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Book Reviews

These books are nonfiction for ages 13–18.
Use the following links for other books.

Nonfiction 13–18


1621, A New Look at Thanksgiving
This excellent book takes a look at Thanksgiving from both perspectives: Native American and Pilgrim, combining known facts with historical research and reinforcing the idea that history is not just one version of anything.

Afghanistan to Zimbabwe
Having trouble remembering the names of countries' capital cities? They're in here. Want to know all the mountain ranges in the United States? They're in here, too. In short, this is one of those big bulky atlas books in the shape of a fun-to-read fiction adventure. It is aimed at a younger audience, but the facts and figures are good for adults to know as well.

After the Last Dog Died
Ernest Shackleton has been in the news a lot lately in recent years, but Douglas Mawson's struggle across the frozen continent of Antarctica was more harrowing, according to the author of After the Last Dog Died, an excellent new book from National Geographic.

Airborne
This timely book from National Geographic is as detailed a biography as you're going to find that is also written for young readers. The subtitle, "A Photobiography of Wilbur and Orville Wright," is a bit misleading in that it suggests lots of photos and little text. What you the reader get is lots of photos and lots of text. It's good text, too, offering facts and figures and perspective and fun facts and all manner of other kinds of information that will have the reader immersed in all things Wright before they ever get their plane off the ground.

Amelia Earhart, Young Air Pioneer
Explore the childhood of the famous female flyer. Follow her as she breaks down barriers for women from an early age. See her have lots of fun with her sister and their friends! This is the first in a series of restored books from the Young Patriots Series.

America at Bat
This little book is a big picture of how intertwined America and baseball really are. It has pictures, stats, trivia quizzes, and story after story of American baseball history and culture. Excellent!

America Votes
This amazing book from Kids Can Press is quite possibly the best book about the American electoral process in many a year. It is simply full of helpful and useful information, presented in a helpful and useful way, with fun pictures and helpful graphics.

Building Liberty
Written by a French graphic artist and originally published in French, Building Liberty tells the story of Lady Liberty through the eyes of four young boys, each of which has his own unique tale. This book can serve as a primer for any discussion of the building of the Statue of Liberty, and it contains many excellent details that leave the reader knowing much more than the average American about just how that statue came to be.

Climbing Everest
This is one wonderful book! It is LOADED with details, all kinds of them, about the author's trek up Mount Everest, about the gear he used and had built, and about the challenges he faced along the way. The author, Laurie Skreslet, is a veteran mountain climber who had wanted to climb the tallest mountain the world for years. In 1982, he got his chance.

Created Equal
This entry in the Crossroads America series from National Geographic examines the struggle of American women to win the right to vote in national elections. All the main players are here, along with some good analysis of the uphill battle they faced to win what modern readers consider a basic right.

Cultures Collide
This entry in the Crossroads America series from National Geographic examines the cultural phenomena created by Europeans' visits to and eventual settlement of North American and the effect of all of it on Native Americans, and vice versa.

Curious Kids Guides
Check out this cool pair of books, which take the Q-A format to a whole new level. Complete with vivid and eye-catching illustrations, these books make Ancient Greece and the Middle Ages come alive.

Curse of the Pharaohs
Such an expert as Zahi Hawass knows a great deal about Egypt, the Pyramids, the Pharaohs; and the so-called curses that have resonated through the legends of time, and he puts that expertise on full display in The Curse of the Pharaohs, an eminently readable and entertaining examination of those "curses," answering once and for all, in his opinion, the question that has plagued archaeologists for a very long time.

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