So, be prepared, I'm going to gush a little today. It's not often I come across an entire non-fiction series that I absolutely love and think every child and adult could quite possibly pick up and feel the same way. But it's happened with the "Is That a Fact?" series, put out by Lerner.
I literally sat down and read all five books from cover to cover, not skimming or skipping the fact boxes or any of that cheating...I read them all. Each one is chock full of interesting facts about things you probably didn't know (I didn't know most of them) and they're presented in such an intriguing, eye-catching manner
with content that is pretty darn cool, that you can't help but like the books.
I started with Does it Really Take Seven Years to Digest Swallowed Gum? and Other Questions You've Always Wanted to Ask by Sandy Donovan. The answer to the title question is obviously no...but there are some pretty tricky ones in here, like "when you bite on a wint-o-green, Life Saver in the dark, does it make a spark?" And..."does Jell-O gelatin really contain animal bones and skin?" Nice and gross for those boy readers!
Moving on to book 2, Can an Old Dog Learn New Tricks? and Other Questions About Animals by Buffy Silverman we see the question: "will a mother bird abandon her babies after a person touches them, because she smells human scent?" And..."can an alligator live in a sewer?" Questions and myths we've heard since we were children, but never got a straight answer to.
In all five books I was really impressed by the fun level in the questions asked. We got actually "school-like" questions, mixed with gross questions, mixed with urban myths. Each question is paired with the answer and then a brief explanation as to why or why not the answer is yes or no. There is also a glossary section in each book, as well as Further Reading and a Bibliography.
I'm a big fan of Lerner books and you'll always see me raving about the quality here on the blog. When they say "library bound" they mean it. These books hold up really well, the series length is always perfect, and the content of the books is both educational and fun. I had a blast reading through these!
Hand them to boys or girls and/or reluctant readers. They're going to learn something and keep you on your toes, running around the house yelling out facts.
Titles in the series include:
Does It Really Take Seven Years to Digest Swallowed Gum? by Sandy Donovan
Can an Old Dog Learn New Tricks? by Buffy Silverman
Is There Life on Other Planets by Gregory L. Vogt
Does an Apple a Day Keep the Doctor Away? by Sandy Donovan
Can Lightning Strike the Same Place Twice? by Joanne Mattern
Review copies received from publisher