Monday, January 22, 2007


Markle, Sandra. 2006. RESCUES! Minneapolis, MN: Lerner. ISBN 0822534134 [Suggested Grade Levels 5-8]

From a baby trapped in a burning house in 1994 to the tsunami that wreaked havoc off the coasts of the Indian Ocean in 2004, Markle presents eleven disasters around the world and their daring rescues. For each of the eleven events described, Markle sets the stage by describing how the person(s) came to be in that situation. She then details the actual disaster, the rescue, and the technology used in each event. Finally, she gives a short description of what happened after the rescue and what those persons are doing now. Because Markle conducted phone interviews with the people involved, each section is infused with first-person accounts. This book is packed with real action and real heroes.

Markle’s engaging prose is accentuated by vivid photographs that bring the action close to the reader. The colorful layout of the book is especially appealing. Blocks of lime green text set against a blue backdrop are eye-catching. The different colors used for text is attractive without appearing busy. One of the strengths of this book is the information about science or technology that is presented separately as sidebars or full-page blocks. Markle does a remarkable job of explaining complex information in a simple, straightforward manner. Source notes, bibliography, index, and informational books and websites are appended.

Invite readers to choose a more recent disaster described in the book such as the tsunami in 2004 or Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and locate newspaper accounts of these events. Read some of these aloud, especially if they describe other rescues that took place.

Other books for children about rescuers and rescues:
Kyi, Tanya Lloyd. RESCUES!. ISBN 1554510341
Watts, Claire. RESCUE. ISBN 0789473941

By S. Zulema Silva Bewley

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