A Pandemic Is Worldwide

Harper/HarperCollins/. (Let’s-Read-and-Find-Out-Science). Feb. 2022. 40p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780063086265; pap. $7.99. ISBN 9780063086326.
PreS-Gr 2–In simple terms and with lots of explanatory illustrations, this addition to the “Let’s-Read-and-Find-Out” series offers an objective view of a pandemic that is easy to understand. Beginning with an explanation of how an illness can become an outbreak, epidemic, and pandemic, Thomson then presents a brief history of pandemics, and how they were eliminated with quarantines and eventually through the invention of vaccines. She characterizes Europeans who brought diseases, such as smallpox, which killed so many Indigenous people in the Western Hemisphere, as invaders. The work describes the current pandemic, illustrates how the coronavirus is spread by saliva and phlegm, and explains how it can make some people sicker than others. Stating that a pandemic is caused by a bacteria or a virus, the book describes ways in which readers can actively inhibit the spread of the disease through handwashing, covering injuries, and staying away from sick people; it emphasizes the importance of isolation with a very helpful chart, and even includes directions for proper handwashing technique. Other additions include a glossary and time line of pandemics with numbers of deaths from each.
VERDICT This slender volume may alleviate fears and help readers understand how illness spreads, while its underlying message is that those who wear masks, wash their hands, and stay home can help to end pandemics.

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