Countries of the World. Essential Library/ ABDO, 2013. 144p. PLB $35.64. Index. Glossary. Source notes. Additional resources. Photos. Illus. Maps. Timeline. Charts. Graphs.
5Q * 3P * J * S
Buckley, A. M. Italy. 978-1-61783-114-0.
Hamen, Susan. Australia. 978-1-61783-626-8.
Countries of the World is a high quality, easy-to-navigate book series which includes titles on many countries around the globe. This series has clear, concise language and highlights, using sidebar "inserts" and "pop-up" circles that have phrases, definitions, or highlights of topics on the page. Historical events, people, and concepts of culture are briefly discussed, providing enough for school reports or general information for travel and history knowledge. Information is organized attractively with layout and graphics giving it a well developed website feel for today's modern students. Every page has images of some kind, like photos, graphs, charts, maps, etc. Chapters are short and broken into only a few major headlined sections. Most chapters cover country topics like visiting, geography, nature, history, people, culture, politics, economics, and modern times. Countries from North and South America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Asia are available. Both the Australia and Italy volumes are identical in style and coverage. Many interesting and unique facts are presented like the origins of the song "Waltzing Matilda" in Australia and the origins of the word "fascism" in Italy among other fun informational tidbits.
Overall, this series would be a worthy purchase to update a print collection in any school or public library that provides homework support or wants easy-to-use resources for basic country and travel information.
5Q Hard to imagine it being better written.
4Q Better than most, marred only by occasional lapses.
3Q Readable, without serious defects.
2Q Better editing or work by the author might have warranted a 3Q.
1Q Hard to understand how it got published, except in relation to its P rating (and most even then sometimes).
5P Every YA (who reads) was dying to read it yesterday.
4P Broad general or genre YA appeal.
3P Will appeal with pushing.
2P For the YA reader with a special interest in the subject.
1P No YA will read unless forced to for assignments.
GRADE LEVEL INTEREST
M Middle School (defined as grades 6-8).
J Junior High (defined as grades 7-9).
S Senior High (defined as grades 10-12).
A/YA Adult-marketed book recommended for YAs.
(a) Highlighted Reviews
(G) Graphic Novel Format