Thursday, October 2, 2014

Fall Reading 2014 I Survived True Stories: Five Epic Disasters

I've read several of the "I Survived" series (which are historical fiction), so I was very interested in what a companion volume of nonfiction stories would be like. One of the main attractions for readers of the "I Survived" books is that they follow a young person through the disaster. Would the nonfiction book be boring in comparison? No, definitely not. The author has managed to do a reconstruction of an actual survivor from each of the 5 events and track them through the time before, during, and after the disaster. Whether you are fascinated by the Titanic or tornadoes, you will feel as if the figures are coming to life again in front of you. The files that share facts and photos at the end of each story are handy for history enthusiasts, as are the recommendations for further reading. My favorite of the stories is the one about the Great Boston Molasses Flood.

This would be a good introduction to how to do research, since Tarshis talks frankly about how many sources she used to put together the stories - books, magazine and newspaper articles, interviews, photos, etc. The shorter length of the stories will also please readers who want to read about these famous events, but don't want to deal with a full-length book about one of them. I would recommend this to anyone who has enjoyed the fiction series or has an interest in disasters.

I read an e-book provided by the publisher through NetGalley. It was published September 30, 2014.

Update: We just added this book to the library through our spring book fair.

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