Chris Oxlade is an experienced author of non-fiction books for children. He has written more than 200 titles on science, technology, sports and hobbies, from encyclopedia articles to fun activity books.
Gr 4-6-Enhanced by plenty of photos, digital paintings, and diagrams, these examinations of rocks and related substances treat their topics in unusual detail. Each describes distinguishing characteristics, creation, history (the "rock cycle"), and human uses in central narratives with additional notes, suggestions for activities during walks outside, and occasional thumbnail biographies of scientists in side boxes. Each volume ends with a simple activity ("Make Your Own Sediment!") plus a handful of multimedia resources and places to visit. Pleasant surprises include a picture of the diamond-studded skull created by Damien Hirst in Crystals, discussions of erosion and other environmental issues in Soil, and, in Fossils, mention of "living fossils," "trace fossils" (such as those created by footprints), fossil fakes, and fossil fuels. (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.