November 1, 2016 Booklist 47 www.booklistonline.com
ricanes Andrew, Mitch, and Katrina all make an appearance. Tornado!
describes the EF Scale, which measures a tornado’s power by its destructiveness, though the corresponding wind speeds are not provided.
The hazards of forest and brush fires are tackled in Wildfire!, as are the
ways smoke jumpers and hotshots help combat these blazes. The science is cursory at best in the books on severe weather and would have
benefited from simple diagrams illustrating how tornadoes or hurricanes form. Still, the dramatic photos of the disasters in action, as well
as their aftermaths, will hold many a kid’s attention. A high-interest
series for browsing or jumping off. —Julia Smith
STEAM EVERY DAY SERIES. ROURKE. GR. 5–7.
STEAM Guides in App Development. By Ruth Kirk. 2016.
48p. illus., paper, $10.95 (9781681918105). 005.
STEAM Guides in Transportation. By Ruth Kirk. 2016. 48p.
illus., paper, $10.95 (9781681918082). 629.04.
The colorful books in the STEAM Every Day series point out how
science, technology, engineering, math, and the arts influence the
development and design of products today. Each book opens with
a textbook-like list of “Before & After Reading Activities.” Drawn
from many sources, the illustrations, mainly photos and digital art,
dominate the pages, leaving room for a paragraph or two of information printed in large type on each double-page spread, along with a
fast-fact box and the occasional diagram. App Development introduces
topics such as the workings of touch screens, the transfer of binary
information, and the art of icon design. A two-page presentation on
collaborative work within an international app-development company
leads to a four-page discussion of world time zones. Though a bit off-topic, it’s one of the more informative parts of the book. Transportation
presents a variety of technological developments in the field. A chapter on drones seeks to defuse fears by presenting their more positive
applications, such as delivering humanitarian aid during natural disasters. The closing discussion promotes the many practical uses for
nanotechnology without mentioning environmental concerns. Given
the breadth of the topics and the brevity of the texts, it’s not surprising
that the content seems superficial at times. Still, the books may be useful as supplemental titles. —Carolyn Phelan
SUPERWOMEN ROLE MODELS SERIES. ROSEN/
POWERKIDS. GR. 3–6.
Kate Middleton. By Emily Jankowski Mahoney. 2016. 32p.
illus., lib. ed., $26.25 (9781508148074). 941.086.
Malala Yousafzai. By Caitie McAneney. 2016. 32p. illus., lib.
ed., $26.25 (9781508148081). 305.42092.
Michelle Obama. By Sarah Machajewski. 2016. 32p. illus., lib.
ed., $26.25 (9781508148128). 973.932092.
Ruth Bader Ginsburg. By Heather Moore Niver. 2016. 32p.
illus., lib. ed., $26.25 (9781508148135). 347.73.
The Superwomen Role Models series might be hyping its subjects
with that title, but not by much. Four very different but notable wom-
en are introduced here. Kate Middleton shows that this woman is more
than a fairy-tale princess by describing her modest beginnings, her
hard work both as a commoner and a princess, and her desire to follow
in the charitable footsteps of her husband Prince William’s mother,
Diana. Malala Yousafzai gives a compact introduction to the young
activist’s story, focusing on her father’s role in her life, both by provid-
ing her with education and standing by her when she made speeches
about education, which led to her being shot by the Taliban. Michelle
Obama covers her initiatives as First Lady, including “Let’s Move,” and
focus on veteran affairs in addition to highlighting how her parents
provided her with a strong example of what it means to work hard. At
first glance, the petite subject of Ruth Bader Ginsburg seems an unlikely
woman to be nicknamed (“the Notorious RBG”) after a rapper, but
readers soon learn how Ginsburg overcame great odds and discrimi-
nation to become the second female Supreme Court justice. Brightly
formatted and engaging, these books include quotes by the featured
women, short but informative sidebars, and exceptionally sharp color
photos. Strong introductions to strong women. —Ilene Cooper
WHO’S CHANGING THE WORLD? SERIES. LERNER.
Taking Action for Civil and Political Rights. By Eric Braun.
2016. 48p. illus., lib. ed., $33.32 (9781467793940). 323.
Taking Action to Help the Environment. By Eric Braun. 2016.
48p. illus., lib. ed., $33.32 (9781467793926). 363.7.
Taking Action to Improve People’s Health. By Eric Braun.
2016. 48p. illus., lib. ed., $33.32 (9781467793957). 362.0425.
Taking Action to Improve Schools. By Sabina Lawson. 2016.
48p. illus., lib. ed., $33.32 (9781467793933). 371.2.
One doesn’t need to be a celebrity or of age to vote to be an activist.
These titles in the Who’s Changing the World? series show that it just
takes a willingness to change and a commitment to act. Each book
divides chapters into related, timely concerns with short profiles of
kid, teen, and adult activists in the U.S. and around the world. They
include well-known scientists and television stars, such as Jane Good-all and Jazz Jennings, but the majority are everyday heroes. Taking
Action for Civil and Political Rights looks at issues concerning representative government, workers’ rights, speech and media, and civil
rights, such as the Black Lives Matter movement and petitioning to
end Photoshopping in magazines. Taking Action to Help the Environment addresses wildlife protection, climate change, clean energy, and
safer food, including efforts to reduce dolphin hunting and stand
up for small-scale farmers. Taking Action to Improve People’s Health
focuses on fighting hunger, stopping the spread of disease, and raising awareness of mental health by highlighting such issues as vehicle
emissions, the stigma associated with mental illness, and obstacles
facing people of color. Taking Action to Improve Schools concentrates
on access to education, school safety, cultural awareness, and gender
equality as it discusses ending crowded classrooms and promoting
gender equality in school sports. Informative and inspirational for
any reader. —Angela Leeper