Braille Book Review

March-April 2003
Books for Children--Nonfiction

The following books were recently produced for the NLS program. To order books, contact your braille-lending library.

This page includes Web-Braille links to full-text braille versions of books. Eligible patrons may sign up for Web-Braille through the library that handles their braille magazine subscriptions.


Chess: From First Moves to Checkmate BR 13828
by Daniel King
1 volume
Introduces chess basics. Explains how to set up the board, move individual pieces, place an opponent in check, and secure a checkmate. Discusses the shapes of the pieces, history, rules, and strategies of the game. Describes some of the great players and matches. For grades 4-7 and older readers. 2000.

Turkeys, Pilgrims, and Indian Corn: The Story of the Thanksgiving Symbols BR 13887
by Edna Barth
1 volume
Explains why Americans give credit to the Pilgrims of Plymouth for the first Thanksgiving in 1621 and why it is celebrated by feasting. Discusses Pilgrim beliefs and customs. Describes some of the traditional foods associated with this national holiday. For grades 4-7. 2000.

World Holidays: A Watts Guide for Children BR 13889
by Heather Moehn
2 volumes
Brief descriptions of religious and secular holidays celebrated around the world. Includes Japan's Children's Day, Mexico's Day of the Dead, the Muslim world's Ramadan, and the United States' observances of Halloween, April Fools' Day, and Pearl Harbor Day. Also describes various calendars. For grades 4-7 and older readers. 2000.

The Blues Singers: Ten Who Rocked the World BR 13890
by Julius Lester
1 volume
Capsule biographies of ten great blues singers: Bessie Smith, Robert Johnson, Mahalia Jackson, Muddy Waters, Billie Holiday, B.B. King, Ray Charles, Little Richard, James Brown, and Aretha Franklin. Includes personal anecdotes and reflections that link the singers to the larger musical tradition. For grades 3-6 and older readers. 2001.

Holly, Reindeer, and Colored Lights: The Story of the Christmas Symbols BR 13898
by Edna Barth
1 volume
Traces Christmas traditions and symbols back to Christian, mythological, and pagan sources. Covers the star, tree and its ornaments, the Yule log, Santa Claus, gift exchanging, food, and bells--all associated with this December holiday. For grades 4-7. 2000.

Witches, Pumpkins, and Grinning Ghosts: The Story of the Halloween Symbols BR 13900
by Edna Barth
1 volume
Discusses the origins of this popular end-of-October holiday. Explains symbols associated with Halloween such as the witch in her pointed hat, black cats, bats, the Jack-O'-Lantern, and the tradition of trick-or-treating. For grades 4-7. 2000.

The Story of Thanksgiving BR 13914
by Robert Merrill Bartlett
1 volume
Traces the history and customs of Thanksgiving, from the harvest festivals of the ancient world to American traditions in the twenty-first century. Tells how the Pilgrims spent their first few years in the New World and describes their thanksgiving celebrations with the Wampanoag Indians. For grades 2-4. 2001.

Australia, the Pacific, and Antarctica BR 13915
by Martyn Bramwell
1 volume
Brief information on the geography, population, and economy of the continents of Australia and Antarctica as well as the numerous islands in the Pacific Ocean that lie in the Southern Hemisphere. For grades 5-8. 2000.

The Dinosaurs of Waterhouse Hawkins: An Illuminating History of Mr. Waterhouse Hawkins, Artist and Lecturer BR 14022
by Barbara Kerley
1 volume
The true story of the British artist who built the first life- size models of dinosaurs for exhibit in England in 1854. During his lifetime, Hawkins dedicated his skills to educating people on both sides of the Atlantic about these awe-inspiring creatures. PRINT/BRAILLE. For grades 2-4. Caldecott Honor. 2001.

The Emperor Lays an Egg BR 14026
by Brenda Z. Guiberson
1 volume
Describes the care and attention devoted to a baby emperor penguin by both parents, from protecting the egg in the Antarctic winter, through hatching, to seeing the chick on its way to finding its own food independently. PRINT/BRAILLE. For grades K- 3. 2001.

The Sorcerer's Companion: A Guide to the Magical World of Harry Potter BR 14053
by Allan Zola Kronzek and Elizabeth Kronzek
2 volumes
Guide to everything magical in the first four Harry Potter books. Presents the folklore, mythology, and history behind objects, spells, and creatures in Harry's world. Discusses arithmancy--one of Hermione's favorite subjects--the hippogriff, the invisibility cloak, runes, and the unicorn, among other items. For grades 4-7. 2001.

Hope through Heartsongs BR 14065
by Mattie J.T. Stepanek
1 volume
A third collection of poems by a young boy with an incurable disease, who cherishes hope even as he faces adversity and personal challenge. In September 2001 he wrote "For Our World," wishing that everyone would pray for peace. For grades 3-6 and older readers. Bestseller 2002.

Shamrocks, Harps, and Shillelaghs: The Story of the St. Patrick's Day Symbols BR 14115
by Edna Barth
1 volume
Explores the origin and meaning of the symbols and legends associated with St. Patrick's Day, celebrated annually on March 17. This 2001 edition includes several activities. For grades 4- 7. 1977.

Helen Keller BR 14116
by George Sullivan
1 volume
Biography of the gifted woman who successfully dealt with her own disabilities while trying to better the lives of other deaf and blind people. Uses excerpts from Helen Keller's writings. For grades 3-6. 2000.

A Christmas Treasury: Very Merry Stories and Poems BR 14121
by Kevin Hawkes
1 volume
An anthology that includes a selection from Wind in the Willows (BR 12977) depicting Mole's hospitality and Rat's resourcefulness; "Christmas at the Hollow Tree Inn," a story featuring a dog who plays Santa Claus; two traditional carols; and Clement Moore's poem "A Visit from St. Nicholas." For grades 3-6 and older readers. 2001.

Lilies, Rabbits, and Painted Eggs: The Story of the Easter Symbols BR 14127
by Edna Barth
1 volume
Traces the history of Easter symbols from their Christian and pagan origins to such present-day additions as rabbits and new clothes. Several activities are included in this edition. For grades 4-7. 2001.

El Niņo and La Niņa: Weather in the Headlines BR 14154
by April Pulley Sayre
1 volume
Examines El Niņo and La Niņa phenomena and why they occur. Discusses how meteorologists track them, how they affect world-wide weather patterns, and what effects on global warming are possible. For grades 6-9. 2000.

Helen Keller: Rebellious Spirit BR 14162
by Laurie Lawlor
2 volumes
Biography of the blind and deaf girl whose spirit knew no limitations. Discusses Keller's achievements in the context of the social expectations for women and people with disabilities in the early twentieth century. Describes her disappointments and frustrations as well as her accomplishments. For grades 5-8. 2001.

Next section of Braille Book Review | Previous section of Braille Book Review | Braille Book Review Home Page

Go to the NLS Home Page