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You Wouldn't Want Series.

You Wouldn't Want Series

Illustrated by David Antram

Franklin Watts, A Division of Scholastic, Inc.

Box 1795 Danbury, CT 06816 1-800-621-1115

Each book 32 pgs, Hardback $26.50

You Wouldn't Want to Sail With Christopher Columbus by Fiona Macdonald

ISBN# 0531123553

You Wouldn't Want to Sail on a 19th-Century Whaling Ship by Peter Cook

ISBN# 0531123561

You Wouldn't Want to be an American Colonist by Jacqueline Morley

ISBN# 053112357X

You Wouldn't Want to be a Mammoth Hunter by John Malam

ISBN# 0531123545

Sometimes being a parent has some really cool perks. I have always enjoyed reading to my children, and books like the ones in the You Wouldn't Want series always put a smile on not only my face, but my daughters' as well. These books are some of the best I have come across with illustrations, which are sure to bring a smile to your face and make your children chuckle. The text is highly engaging and so much fun to read to your children, and they will enjoy reading them to you as well.

The new additions to this series are:

You Wouldn't Want to Sail With Christopher Columbus speaks of young boys in the late 1400's and their dreams of exploring the world. It tells of the perks of traveling by sea as well as the various goods you can acquire and sell. Readers will also see why exploring was different than they might have expected, and not at all as glamorous as they might have thought. Explorers had to seek funding, prepare fleets, sail the ship--which is no easy task in and of itself, navigate with some rather interesting tools, work hard and live in unpleasant conditions, help your crew deal with not only being homesick but also being stuck on the ship for months at a time, deal with the peoples of unexplored areas, load the ship and then make it home safely. When it is all over I would venture to guess that most who explored would have to seriously wonder if it was worth it and if they would really want to do it again.

You Wouldn't Want to Sail on a 19th-Century Whaling Ship tells the story of a 14-year-old boy who is embarking on the whaling ship named the Essex. It is his dream to be a whale hunter, but little does he realize what it entails. Such as, having to pay for any clothes that you may need, swabbing decks, serving meals, dealing with bitter cold weather, killing whales, slipping around in whale blood (yuck), the ship being rammed by whales, and facing starvation and the distinct possibility of cannibalism. While this story may be filled with some gruesome bits that might bother squeamish children, it is action packed and informative.

You Wouldn't Want to be an American Colonist teaches about the lost colony of Roanoke and then about the hardships of the next voyage. In no way does it sugar coat anything, detailing the trials and tribulations experienced, starting with the hard voyage over. It talks about the problems with the land, the weather and the bugs. It tells of many of the things they suffered and possibly killed half of the settlers, such as polluted water, and invasions from both the Natives and the Spanish. It also gives an idea of what happened when the settlers branched out and explored the area and were hampered by famine and starvation. This is guaranteed to get across much of the same information we teach our younger children in a way that they will retain it.

You Wouldn't Want to be a Mammoth Hunter, now that is something I knew without reading the book, but then I never have been much for physical labor. This book starts by showing the various animals present during the ice age and also how people lived during this time. The description of the dance that the mammoth hunters would do had both me and my daughter laughing out loud. The tools used to hunt these massive beasts are also discussed. It also looks at the uses for various parts of the animals aside from the meat, such as bone houses made from their bones, and clothes made from their skin. There is a great fun section about the mammoth and its habits followed by the hunt and kill. Aside from the dangers involved from beast itself, you have to be weary of others who want to steal your catch, but then there is the feast! This book, as all the others, is a lot of fun and packed with loads of information.

All of these books give a real glimpse into various lives in a way that puts them into perspective, but also entertains children while they learn. When it comes to this set of books I can't express enough just how much fun they are. This is definitely a reading experience that neither you nor your child will want to miss.
COPYRIGHT 2004 Midwest Book Review
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Copyright 2004, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Title Annotation:You Wouldn't Want to Sail With Christopher Columbus; You Wouldn't Want to Sail on a 19th-Century Whaling; You Wouldn't Want to be an American Colonist; You Wouldn't Want to be a Mammoth Hunter
Author:Bennett, Diana
Publication:Reviewer's Bookwatch
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Nov 1, 2004
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