I Know About!: The Young People's Atlas of the World

, ed. illus. by Stephen Sweet. 32p. (Wow!). index. Flowerpot. 2014. Tr $7.99. ISBN 9781770939318.
Gr 2–4—This slim, unintimidating volume is a serviceable, if flawed, first atlas for students just learning about maps. The book begins with six sections discussing geographical features, such as forests, deserts, and mountains, and then moves into nine spreads of maps focusing on different parts of the world. Each full-color map points out physical features, flags, national capitals, major cities, and illustrations that "highlight a few cultural, economic, and political points of interest." These illustrations, unfortunately, are offered without captions or context and present little in the way of useful information. Lack of context is a problem overall: the first page of the book starts with "Rivers, Lakes, and Swamps" without explaining what an atlas is. Some of the graphic references are also confusing; for example, under "Mountains," text refers to an image of Mount St. Helens without indicating which of the several pictures portrays the landmark. A foldout showing large maps of the world is a useful addition, but its placement, smack in the middle of the "North America" spread, is confusing and makes it difficult to see the map. National Geographic Kids Beginner's World Atlas (National Geographic, 2011) is a much more appealing and user-friendly option for this age group.—Kathleen Kelly MacMillan, Carroll County Public Library, MD

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