Monday, July 30, 2012

Nonfiction Monday-- Can You Survive?

It's Nonfiction Monday! Head over to the host for this week, Check it Out, to see a great list of reviews. 

Also, tons and tons of people chime in about what they are reading over at Teach. Mentor Texts, which is a great place to find some good new book reviews.

Butts, Ed. Bodyguards: From Gladiators to the Secret Service.
24 July 2012, Annick Press, E ARC from

This short (128 pages) and graphically appealing nonfiction book is packed with information about various points in history that I had never heard-- because they are bits of information about bodyguards. Reading this reinforced my feeling about digital textbooks-- it is very hard to go back and sort through the long list of anecdotes because instead of flipping through the paper pages, I have to scroll through pages of 6 point font. Just as well that this doesn't seem to be available in digital format. This is a fabulous book, and will be great to hand to students when they need nonfiction. The graphic novel quality will draw in the most reluctant readers, and anything about gladiators or the secret service is always popular. The range of information is impressive-- I learned about Egyptian bodyguards who fought alongside the pharaoh to make sure he wasn't killed, about Spartans, the wild west, Hitler, presidential assassinations, and how bodyguards are trained and worked. It's just miserable to try to read the 6 point font in order to get the pictures.

Doeden, Matt. Can You Survive in the Special Forces: An Interactive Adventure

1 August 2012, Capstone. ARC from

This Choose Your Own Adventure type of nonfiction book was interesting but very difficult to navigate with an E ARC. In order to get the pictures, again, the print had to be very small, and the page numbers to which one needs to turn to explore different story possibilities do not coincide with the E ARC page numbers. I ended up reading the book straight through and trying to figure out which ending went with which operations. There were three missions with a variety of endings, some of which did indeed end with “you” dying or other bad outcomes. Additional information about the special forces and real missions made this a book that my boys who like to read about military activity will absolutely adore. These are very short and rather expensive, but will circulate like crazy. Other titles in this Capstone Press series include surviving in the jungle, Antarctic, Wilderness and Titanic. I will have to look into these as well and if they are Accelerated Reader titles will definitely purchase.


  1. Mrs. Yingling -

    Thanks so much for stopping by my blog and taking the time to comment. You mentioned that you might read Ready Player One but also made a reference to 12-year olds.

    I just wanted to clarify that Ready Player One is definitely intended for adults. It's not only not suitable for kids, but they probably wouldn't get much of it anyway. Just wanted to clarify that.

    There are plenty of fabulous books for middle-grade readers reviewed on my blog, Great Books for Kids and Teens.

    I like your blog and will be back - enjoy your books this week!


    Great Books for Kids and Teens

  2. Bodyguards does sound appealing though challenging in your E-ARC format. I do agree the boys will be drawn to that topic! Have a great week!


  3. I have a couple of the Capstone series and they're been very popular - but no, they don't work well on an e-reader!

  4. Bodyguards looks like a lot of fun! I like the cover and the premise already! Added it to my TBR. :)

  5. Both of these were added to my TBR! Haven't read any of the new Choose Your Own Adventure books and this may be the first one I read.

    Happy reading this week! :)