March 28, 2019

Think you know books?

Which one starts like this? Click on a book below to answer

"So you see...nature has always looked like a horrible mess. But as we go along we discover patterns and come up with theories. The result? The mess I'm gonna show you is smaller than the mess I would've had to show you ten years ago."
Feynman
Jim Ottaviani

Feynman

By: Jim Ottaviani
Recommended for grade(s): 7, 8, 9

In this substantial graphic novel biography, First Second presents the larger-than-life exploits of Nobel-winning quantum physicist, adventurer, musician, world-class raconteur, and one of the greatest minds of the twentieth century: Richard Feynman. Written by nonfiction comics mainstay Jim Ottaviani and brilliantly illustrated by First Second author Leland Myrick, Feynman tells the story of the great man's life from his childhood in Long Island to his work on the Manhattan Project and the Challenger disaster. Ottaviani tackles the bad with the good, leaving the reader delighted by Feynman's exuberant life and staggered at the loss humanity suffered with his death. Anyone who ever wanted to know more about Richard P. Feynman, quantum electrodynamics, the fine art of the bongo drums, the outrageously obscure nation of Tuva, or the development and popularization of the field of physics in the United States need look no further than this rich and joyful work. --From the website at Macmillan

Where to Find

Score a physical copy of the book.

Whatever You Do, Don't Run: True Tales of a Botswana Safari Guide
Peter Allison

Whatever You Do, Don't Run: True Tales of a Botswana Safari Guide

By: Peter Allison
Recommended for grade(s): 11, 12, College Plus

A hilarious, highly original collection of essays based on the Botswana truism: “only food runs!” With a new introduction and new material from the author In the tradition of Bill Bryson, a new writer brings us the lively adventures and biting wit of an African safari guide. Peter Allison gives us the guide’s-eye view of living in the bush, confronting the world’s fiercest terrain of wild animals and, most challenging of all, managing herds of gaping tourists. Passionate for the animals of the Kalahari, Allison works as a top safari guide in the wildlife-rich Okavango Delta. As he serves the whims of his wealthy clients, he often has to stop the impulse to run as far away from them as he can, as these tourists are sometimes more dangerous than a pride of lions. No one could make up these outrageous-but-true tales: the young woman who rejected the recommended safari-friendly khaki to wear a more “fashionable” hot pink ensemble; the lost tourist who happened to be drunk, half-naked, and a member of the British royal family; establishing a real friendship with the continent’s most vicious animal; the Japanese tourist who requested a repeat performance of Allison’s being charged by a lion so he could videotape it; and spending a crazy night in the wild after blowing a tire on a tour bus, revealing that Allison has as much good-natured scorn for himself. The author’s humor is exceeded only by his love and respect for the animals, and his goal is to limit any negative exposure to humans by planning trips that are minimally invasive—unfortunately it doesn’t always work out that way! New story: People often ask safari guides about the experience that frightened them the most. In this story Peter Allison tells of the time he became aware of unseen danger, and knew that somewhere within meters of him was a hunting lioness. Peter Allison is originally from Sydney, Australia. His safaris have been featured in National Geographic, Conde Nast Traveler, and on television programs such as Jack Hanna’s Animal Adventures. He travels frequently to speaking appearances, and splits most of his time between Botswana, Sydney, and San Francisco. -- From Rowman & Littlefield

Where to Find

Score a physical copy of the book.

The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl
Timothy Egan

The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl

By: Timothy Egan
Recommended for grade(s): 11, 12, College Plus

The dust storms that terrorized the High Plains in the darkest years of the Depression were like nothing ever seen before or since. Following a dozen families and their communities through the rise and fall of the region, Timothy Egan tells of their desperate attempts to carry on through blinding black dust blizzards, crop failure, and the death of loved ones. Brilliantly capturing the terrifying drama of catastrophe, he does equal justice to the human characters who become his heroes, “the stoic, long-suffering men and women whose lives he opens up with urgency and respect” (New York Times). In an era that promises ever-greater natural disasters, The Worst Hard Time is “arguably the best nonfiction book yet” (Austin Statesman Journal) on the greatest environmental disaster ever to be visited upon our land and a powerful reminder about the dangers of trifling with nature. National Book Award 2006. --from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

Where to Find

Score a physical copy of the book.

Before We Go Extinct: A Novel
Karen Rivers

Before We Go Extinct: A Novel

By: Karen Rivers
Recommended for grade(s): 9, 10

J.C., who goes by the nickname Sharky, has been having a hard time ever since his best friend died in front of him in what might or might not have been an accident. Shell-shocked, Sharky spends countless hours holed up in his room, obsessively watching documentaries about sharks and climate change—and texting his dead friend. Hoping a change of location will help, Sharky’s mom sends him to visit his dad on a remote island in Canada. There, Sharky meets a girl who just may show him how to live—and love—again. --from Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

Where to Find

Score a physical copy of the book.