SERIES MADE SIMPLE

The Jamestown Colony Disaster

9781512411164. ea vol: 40p. (Cause-and-Effect Disasters). chart. diag. ebook available. further reading. glossary. index. maps. notes. photos. Lerner. Nov. 2016. lib. ed. $30.65.
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Gr 4–6—Human error can turn already dangerous situations and natural disasters into catastrophic events. Each book summarizes the topic incident from beginning to end and explains how public reaction triggered changes, such as stricter building codes after the Great Chicago Fire and a new federal weather bureau after the Blizzard of 1888. Concluding summary spreads use arrows to link together causes and effects for the disasters. Text averages about three long paragraphs per page, which allows for adequate background and detail without being too gratuitous, gory, or sensational. A major strength is the combination of large photos and high-quality maps, graphs, and charts that depict the magnitude of the disasters. There is no shortage of coverage about most of these topics, but the well-done narratives and images will help students understand the impact of each disaster on history.
Sherman explores the nineteenth-century Irish potato disaster in four succinct chapters addressing its economic and political causes and effects. She provides historical background before relating the major events and their far-reaching aftermath (including modern research tracing the original source of the crop's disease to Mexico). Numerous photographs/illustrations, diagrams, sidebars, and a clear appended flow chart round out the presentation. Reading list, websites. Bib., glos., ind.

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