SERIES MADE SIMPLE

Famous Spies

. 9781680725858. Caswell, Deanna. Real Spy Gadgets. ISBN 9781680725902.ea vol: 24p. (Spy Kid). further reading. glossary. index. photos. websites. Black Rabbit. Aug. 2018. lib. ed. $29.95.
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Gr 1–3—Though there is much to be found within these pages, the series is weak on historical detail. Famous Spies includes thumbnail sketches of Sidney Reilly, one of the men considered a source for the character James Bond, and prominent U.S. double agent Aldrich Ames. The presentation is highly visual, employing a balance of vivid accent color, cartoonish drawings, and stock photos to evoke a mysterious, Cold War past. Some volumes, particularly those covering disguises and spy strategies, are rich with suggestions for trying out espionage techniques, such as putting a pebble in a shoe to change one's gait or noticing the differences between two seemingly identical photos. However, descriptions of particular missions and technologies are too often vague or unclear. The "Learn More" section in each title typically refers readers to other titles in the series or to the same small number of websites.
VERDICT An additional selection where narrative nonfiction is in demand for very young readers.

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