Compact Research: Current Issues Reviews

Biomedical Ethics: ISBN 978-1-60152-157-6
The Death Penalty: ISBN 978-1-60152-158-3
The Green Movement: ISBN 978-1-60152-163-7
School Library Journal, January, 2012

Gr 7 Up These concise volumes explore three controversial topics by combining objective narratives, opinion-based primary documents, and relevant supporting data. Each book begins with a useful overview of the issue before moving on to the fundamental questions that surround it, such as "Should Doctors Be Allowed to Help Patients Die?" "Does the Death Penalty Deter Violent Crime?" "Do the Benefits of Going Green Outweigh the Costs?" While the questions are pertinent and the answers solid in construction, the brief primary-source quotations, divorced as they are from the context of their complete arguments, are of little use to student researchers. The same can be said for the "Facts and Illustrations" sections that, while eye-catching, may only provide prefatory material for much larger issues. Although rounded out by chronologies, lists of related organizations, and print and online resources for further research, these books attempt too much while readers come away with too little.

The Death Penalty: ISBN 978-1-60152-008-1
Illegal Immigration: ISBN 978-1-60152-009-8
Biomedical Ethics: ISBN 978-1-60152-013-5
School Library Journal, May 2007

Gr 9 Up These books are deceptively thin as they are packed with well-organized, useful information. They include primary-source quotes, several types of graphs, lists of facts, and brief time lines of seminal events. The design is well thought out and the presentations are much more user-friendly for ELL learners and lower-ability researchers than the "Opposing Viewpoints" series (Gale). The authors touch on many of the areas that teens need when researching for reports or speeches, and each volume presents the most current information feasible in books on such ever-changing, timely topics. They also cater to different research styles with straight text, photos, lists, charts and graphs, and illustrations about each topic. Students will welcome these information-rich titles.
—Lynn Evarts, Sauk Prairie High School, Prairie du Sac, WI