Compact Research: Current Issues Reviews

Genetic Engineering: ISBN 978-1-60152-038-8 / eBook: 978-1-60152-309-9
Media Violence: ISBN 978-1-60152-035-7 / eBook: 978-1-60152-306-8
Animal Experimentation: ISBN 978-1-60152-037-1 / eBook: 978-1-60152-308-2
Obesity: ISBN 978-1-60152-040-1 / eBook: 978-1-60152-311-2
Conflict in the Middle East: ISBN 978-1-60152-016-6 / 978-1-60152-300-6
VOYA, April 1, 2008

The strongest element of this series, which currently includes sixteen titles such as Genetic Engineering, Media Violence, Conflict in the Middle East, and Animal Experimentation, is the amount and quality of documentation and further resources provided. Source notes are provided for every quote and statistic within the narrative chapters. The back material includes a chronology, a list of key people and advocacy groups, a list of related organizations, and a bibliography of books, periodicals, and Internet sources, none of which are more than five years old. The obesity volume covers causes, prevention and treatment, as well as the question of whether obesity is a matter of personal responsibility. Genetic Engineering covers the safety of genetically engineered food, the safety of genetic engineering in humans (including the use of stem cells and genetic screening), and the issues surrounding cloning. This series is recommended for students not yet ready to tackle the Opposing Viewpoints or Current Controversies series, as well as those who respond to visual interpretations of the facts.

Animal Experimentation: ISBN 978-1-60152-037-1 / eBook: 978-1-60152-308-2
Genetic Engineering: ISBN 978-1-60152-038-8
School Library Journal, July 2008

Gr 9 Up Each of these comprehensive guides contains a thorough explanation of the scientific field and dispassionately presents the arguments for and against its practices. The format is identical in each, and includes an overview, several long chapters examining sub-topics, and a chapter on key organizations. What makes the books different is that each discussion chapter ends with a collection of primary-source quotes as well as clear, colorful illustrations, including maps, charts, graphs, and photographs that provide excellent visual aids. Unlike the "Opposing Viewpoints" series, which contains longer essays, allowing each writer the chance to make a persuasive argument, these titles summarize the opinions from each side in individual entries such as "Are Animal Experiments Conducted Humanely?" and "What Policies Should Govern Genetic Engineering?" If a teacher's goal is for students to learn to research, these books will completely undermine that effort. If the goal is for students to take a controversial topic, learn about it, and write persuasive arguments of their own, these titles will be a goldmine.
—Denise Schmidt, San Francisco Public Library, CA