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Volume VIII Number 10 . . . . January 18, 2002
With their successful blend of information and fabulous colour photographs, these two books describe the wonders of the rainforest and the problems inherent in its rapidly diminishing size. Readers will gain an appreciation for this marvellous ecosystem and the countless benefits it provides for the entire world. Home to 140 million people, the rainforests of South America, Central and West Africa and Southeast Asia are among the world's last remaining wildernesses. People and Places features the indigenous people, the Pygmies, Yanomami and Penan, to name a few, who dwell in these rainforests and their struggle to maintain their traditional ways of life. The book discusses the flora and fauna of each area as well as the lifestyles of the people and how rainforest destruction affects them.
Without sounding preachy, Resources and Conservation alerts readers to the alarming devastation of rainforest land and the subsequent loss of plant and animal species and the dramatic change in climate which results. Highlights of the seven chapters include the vast assortment of foods grown in the forest, softwood and hardwood trees, medicinal plants and the effects of rainforest destruction on floods, droughts and global warming. A section devoted to rescuing the rainforest not only provides disturbing facts about endangered and extinct species but also tells readers how programs, such as the establishment of national parks and conservation organizations, are helping to prevent further loss of habitat.
The books, identical in format, have an abundance of maps, diagrams and crisp, clear photographs to match the text. A glossary and an index are provided. For those readers who would like more information, a list of addresses and websites for rainforest preservation groups is also included. A "must-read" for anyone concerned about the environment.
Gail Hamilton is a teacher-librarian at Bird's Hill School in East St. Paul, MB.
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Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.