________________ CM . . . . Volume XVI Number 9. . . .October 30, 2009.

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Deep Sea Extremes. (Extreme Nature).

Natalie Hyde.
St. Catharines, ON: Crabtree, 2009.
32 pp., pbk. & hc., $9.95 (pbk.), $20.76 (hc.).
ISBN 978-0-7787-4518-1 (pbk.), ISBN 978-0-7787-4501-3 (RLB).

Subject Headings:
Deep sea ecology-Juvenile literature.
Deep sea animals-Juvenile literature.

Grades 3-4 / Ages 8-9.

Review by Gail Hamilton.

***/4


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Deep Space Extremes. (Extreme Nature).

James Bow
St. Catharines, ON: Crabtree, 2009.
32 pp., pbk. & hc., $9.95 (pbk.), $20.76 (hc.).
ISBN 978-0-7787-4522-8 (pbk.), ISBN 978-0-7787-4505-1 (RLB).

Subject Headings:
Space environment-Juvenile literature.
Deep space-Juvenile literature.
Outer space-Exploration-Juvenile literature.

Grades 3-4 / Ages 8-9.

Review by Gail Hamilton.

***/4


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Desert Extremes. (Extreme Nature).

Natalie Hyde.
St. Catharines, ON: Crabtree, 2009.
32 pp., pbk. & hc., $9.95 (pbk.), $20.76 (hc.).
ISBN 978-0-7787-4517-4 (pbk.), ISBN 978-0-7787-4500-6 (RLB).

Subject Headings:
Desert ecology-Juvenile literature.
Desert animals-Juvenile literature.
Desert plants-Juvenile literature.
Deserts-Juvenile literature.

Grades 3-4 / Ages 8-9.

Review by Gail Hamilton.

***/4


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Frozen Extremes. (Extreme Nature).

Jen Green.
St. Catharines, ON: Crabtree, 2009.
32 pp., pbk. & hc., $9.95 (pbk.), $20.76 (hc.).
ISBN 978-0-7787-4519-8 (pbk.), ISBN 978-0-7787-4502-0 (RLB).

Subject Headings:
Ecology-Polar regions-Juvenile literature.
Animals-Polar regions-Juvenile literature.
Plants-Polar regions-Juvenile literature.
Polar regions-Juvenile literature.

Grades 3-4 / Ages 8-9.

Review by Gail Hamilton.

***/4


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Mountain Extremes. (Extreme Nature).

Gillian Richardson.
St. Catharines, ON: Crabtree, 2009.
32 pp., pbk. & hc., $9.95 (pbk.), $20.76 (hc.).
ISBN 978-0-7787-4520-4 (pbk.), ISBN 978-0-7787-4503-7 (RLB).

Subject Headings:
Mountain ecology-Juvenile literature.
Mountain animals-Juvenile literature.
Mountain plants-Juvenile literature.
Mountains-Juvenile literature.

Grades 3-4 / Ages 8-9.

Review by Gail Hamilton.

***/4


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Rain Forest Extremes. (Extreme Nature).

Jen Green.
St. Catharines, ON: Crabtree, 2009.
32 pp., pbk. & hc., $9.95 (pbk.), $20.76 (hc.).
ISBN 978-0-7787-4521-1 (pbk.), ISBN 978-0-7787-4504-4 (RLB).

Subject Headings:
Rain forest ecology-Juvenile literature.
Rain forest animals-Juvenile literature.
Rain forest plants-Juvenile literature.
Rain forests-Juvenile literature.

Grades 3-4 / Ages 8-9.

Review by Gail Hamilton.

***/4

   

 



excerpt:

The ocean floor has cracks in it where water can trickle into the rocks of the seabed. Some of these cracks are near undersea volcanoes. The water in the rocks is heated by magma, and the super-hot water is pushed back up into the ocean through cracks called hypothermal vents. This hot water is full of dissolved minerals. Some of the minerals form into solid lumps around these vents. Gradually, the crystals build up and make tall chimneys. (From Deep Sea Extremes.)


The new six-volume “Extreme Nature” series takes readers to some of the most remote places on Earth (as well as to outer space) and explains how animals, plants and humans have adapted to living in these extreme environments. Each title consists of five chapters and includes a table of contents, a glossary, an index, and a list of books and web sites for further study. Interspersed throughout the text are other sections, entitled Fast Facts, In the Extreme, and Vital Statistics, each of them providing additional facts related to the chapter. The books’ attractive layout and colourful covers are very appealing, and the fascinating information and vivid illustrations (photographs and diagrams) will sustain the reader’s interest.


     Deep Sea Extremes covers such topics as ocean depths and their measurement with sound beams, devices used for underwater exploration, coping with water pressure, drilling for oil under the ocean, and animal adaptations, such as bioluminescence. Readers will be amazed by facts about marine “snow”, half-ton squid, and the variation between the coldest ocean temperature (-1.9° C in the Antarctic) and the warmest (350° C near underwater volcanoes). One of the most interesting animals in this book is the black medusa jellyfish. Though it is transparent, it is covered with a velvety black umbrella that absorbs all the light that hits it, rendering it so well camouflaged that it wasn’t discovered until 1992.


     Deep Space Extremes provides a brief history of space exploration, including the first animals sent up in space. With 100 billion solar systems in the Milky Way galaxy alone, man has just scratched the surface of space exploration. Topics in this title include the problems of weightlessness, the effects of gravity, advances in space equipment, alien life and UFOs, and future plans of space programs. There is information about space stations which were put in place to make the space program less expensive and about the inventions, inspired by space travel, that are used by people in their daily lives, some examples being scratch-resistant plastic lenses, water purification systems, liquefied baby foods and the fire resistant clothing worn by firefighters.


     Desert Extremes highlights some of the world’s major deserts. Most of the book focuses on the ways in which plants and animals survive in this hot, barren environment, but there is also a chapter devoted to human desert dwellers- their homes, foods and survival skills. Readers can make their own “quicksand” using cornstarch and water to learn how people and animals can quickly sink.


     In Frozen Extremes, topics include the difference between the North and South Poles, seasonal changes at the poles, the northern lights, plant and animal life, the lack of sunlight and darkness at different times of year, and a brief history of South Pole exploration. With temperatures rising above freezing for only 50 days of the year, plants have to grow and mature quickly. This is one of several adaptations of Arctic and Antarctic flora and fauna that is discussed in this title.


     Though Mountain Extremes covers the plants and animals which make high altitude habitats their home, the primary focus of this title is the perils of mountain climbing and the effects of altitude on climbers.


     Rain Forest Extremes features the layers of the rain forest and the various plants and animals that live in each layer. The latter part of the book is, perhaps, the most interesting. Here, readers will learn about the people who inhabit the rain forest, the ruins of Angkor Wat in Cambodia and the Ciudad Perdita in Colombia, the many products (such as sugar, coffee, chocolate and hardwoods) which the rain forest provides, and the environmental threats facing this habitat. There are also a few accounts of people who have been lost in the jungle and survived.


     Generally, these books provide some great information and are sure to appeal to readers.

Recommended.

Gail Hamilton is a teacher-librarian in Winnipeg, MB.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364
Hosted by the University of Manitoba.
 

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