Monday, July 12, 2010

Nonfiction Monday Roundup (and The Bat Scientists!)

The Bat Scientists by Mary Kay Carson, photographs by Tom Uhlman. Grades 4-7. Houghton Mifflin, September 2010. Reviewed from e-galley provided by publisher. 81 pages.

I don't know if you know this about me, but I love bats. They are so cool! They eat insects. They're the only mammals that truly fly. They hang upside down. I just think bats are really cool. In fact, I can't even count the number of times I said, "Oh, cool!" as I was reading this book.

Not only is The Bat Scientists an entry in the Scientists in the Field series (which I love), it's about my favorite animal. Of course it's going to be a winner with me.

Many people think of bats as creepy or diseased, but actually the 1,100 species of bats in the world do a lot of good. Some eat tons of pest insects. Some pollinate flowers. And, okay, some bats drink blood, but bats are much more likely to avoid humans than to mess with them.

And bats, like so many animals, are in trouble. Some species are really endangered because of loss of habitat and a new disease starting to spread in North America. The bat scientists are working to save bats by studying their habits, saving their homes, and educating people about these fantastic creatures.

The beautiful photos, ranging from stunning wide shots of millions of bats to unique close-ups of individuals, will win you over to my side. And the book's got all the elements you'd expect from this series - an index, glossary, and sources. This book will be great for young bat fanatics and it may inspire others to learn more about these awesome animals!

The Bat Scientists will be on shelves September 6!

And it's Nonfiction Monday! Today you're not going to have to go far for your Nonfiction Monday roundup because it's right here! Leave your link in the comments and I'll update it throughout the day.

Travis at 100 Scope Notes gives us a review of How to Clean a Hippopotamus: A Look at Unusual Animal Partnerships by Steven Jenkins & Robin Page. He says, "Appropriate for fact-finding or for pleasure reading, How to Clean a Hippopotamus is a must-add for your nonfiction collection." 

Check out The Black Book of Colors at Red Ted Art. Meggy says "This is a great book to talk about what life without sight might be like. To help build compassion, but also to stimulate the imagination. " 

Lisa over at Shelf-Employed is talking about Bug Zoo: How to Capture, Keep, and Care for Creepy Crawlies by Nick Baker. She calls the book "in-depth guide to observing, and/or capturing and cultivating some of our most common insects".

Angela of Bookish Blather gives us a review of Sex: A Book for Teens by Nikol Hasler. She calls the book "chatty, funny, informative and non-judgmental". 

Head on over to A View from a Window Seat where Jeannine is discussing the picture book biography Summer Birds: The Butterflies of Maria Merian by Margarita Engle, with pictures by Julie Paschkis. She says, "Artist Julie Paschkis... uses bright and light colors to emphasize the joys of discovery and nature." 

Cindy and Lynn at Bookends needed a laugh today, so they're taking a look at Sparky: The Life and Art of Charles Schultz by Beverly Gherman. Lynn says, "Biographies for the younger set aren’t all that common and here’s one that does so much right."

Lori of Lori Calabrese Writes posts a review of Seeds of Change: Wangari's Gift to the World by Jen Cullerton Johnson. She says, "This beautiful story focuses on the strength and struggles of the first African woman and environmentalist to win a Nobel Peace Prize, Wangari Maathai."

Tammy at Apples With Many Seeds shares a post about One Hen: How One Small Loan Made a Big Difference by Katie Smith Milway. She says the book, "[makes] accessible the idea of individuals helping each other and specifically, how this is accomplished through micro-financing." 

The Jean Little Library is taking a quick dip as Jennifer talks about swimming books - perfect for the hot summer weather today! If you're looking for books about swimming to share with a little one, these are some great selections. 

The gals at Wild About Nature examine animals small and large with Mites to Mastadons by Maxine Kumin, illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski. Heidi says, "The combination of Zagarenski's eye-catching paint, paper, and photo collages compliment the text beautifully, making this must-have book for the science classroom or for any young animal lover!"

Roberta at Wrapped in Foil continues her salute to trees with Douglas Florian's Poetrees.  She says, "I love that Florian chose trees from around the world like the banyan, not just common North American ones... As usual there is an element of gentle humor, both visual details and the word play of the poems."

Margo at The Fourth Musketeer shares with us a review of Two Miserable Presidents: Everything Your Schoolbooks Didn't Tell You About the Civil War by Steve Sheinkin. She says, "Despite the comical look of the series, Sheinkin includes a serious historical overview of the war, which highlights all the key events leading up to the war... as well as the key events of the war itself."

Mary Elizabeth at A Novel Idea reviews Insect Detective by Steve Voake. She says, "This gem of a book will encourage your child to observe the intricacies of the natural world right in their own backyard!"

Anastasia of Picture Book of the Day chimes in with a booktalk for her own book Man on the Moon.

Ms. Mac at Check It Out shares two books about Frankie, the Walk 'n Roll Dog by Barbara Gail Techel. She says, "This is an inspirational story that I believe will touch the hearts of many, especially animal lovers."

Jeff over at NC Teacher Stuff gives us a review of Nest, Nook, & Cranny by Susan Blackaby, illustrated by Jamie Hogan. He says, "The reader gets a combination of poetry, figurative language, and science that is entertaining and informative".

Brenda of Prose and Kahn was bowled over by Russell Freedman's The War to End All Wars: World War I.  She says, "Once again, Russell Freedman's masterful storytelling skills bring history to life. If a book about war can be called beautiful, this one can - somberly beautiful."

Erin from Little Kid Lit discusses Sir Charlie Chaplin, the Funniest Man in the World by Sid Fleischman. She says, "The author's obvious love for the subject matter is infectious and sure to engage young readers." 

Shirley at Simply Science gives us a review of 31 Ways to Change the World. She says, "This book is fun and can set the tone for educating children about their place and responsibility in their world."