Young Adult Literature


Voyages Through Time: In the Beginning
by Peter Ackroyd


From School Library Journal
Grade 7 Up-Ackroyd traces the history of life on Earth from the big bang to the emergence of Homo sapiens. Chapters are divided to reflect major eons, eras, periods, and epochs within this vast time span. While the author does not shy away from technical terms, the story of evolution is simply and beautifully laid out. The engaging text reflects the most recent research on prehistoric life-many species of dinosaur are depicted with feathers, and illustrations alternate between the traditional camouflage coloring historically thought to characterize dinosaur appearance and the brighter coloration now believed to have been part of mating rituals and other displays. Discussions involving speculation are clearly noted, and Ackroyd often offers alternate theories after stating the most accepted scientific belief. Informative sidebars and captions are succinct yet expand upon a point in the main text. Eye-catching, relevant illustrations bring the prehistoric world to life. Reference pages with extensive time lines follow the body of the book. An excellent glossary and index are included. Unfortunately, the author includes no source notes or a bibliography. Most material on this topic is geared to a younger or academic audience, so this title is still worthy of purchase.
Courtney Lewis, Wyoming Seminary Preparatory School, Kingston, PA
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