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Patient Zero: Solving the Mysteries of Deadly Epidemics (Anglais) Broché – 1 juin 2014


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Engaging True Stories 5 décembre 2014
Par Annette Lamb - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
PATIENT ZERO by Marilee Peters tells a series of engaging true stories of the world’s scariest epidemics. Focusing on the courageous pioneers of epidemiology, each case follows the quest of a scientist to identify “patient zero”, the first person to contract and spread the disease. In each of the seven deadly diseases examined, scientists were able to build on the work of others to extend our knowledge in the hopes of preventing future catastrophes.

More people have died of disease than wars or natural disasters. The epidemics chronicled in this text include The Great Plague (1665), The Soho Outbreak (1854), Yellow Fever in Cuba (1900), Typhoid in New York City (1906), Spanish Influenza (1918), Ebola in Zaire, (1976), and AIDS in the U.S. (1980).

Peters’ writing style incorporates elements of mystery and horror to bring these compelling stories to life. Whether focusing on sympathetic victims like the infant in London who started the cholera epidemic or over-the-top characters such as Typhoid Mary, the cases are certain to jumpstart interest in other books related to disease and disaster. The glossary, index, and suggested readings are useful for youth readers.

Although students may be attracted to the layout and use of clipart, the book suffers from the lack of authentic primary source documents. Although the book points out that John Graunt collected health statistics, readers don’t get the chance to see his work. This omission would be a great opportunity to connect with online resources such as digital collections. Samuel Pepys’ diary accounts provide exciting insights into The Great Plague of 1665.

Maps play a central role in the world of many scientists seeking the elusive “patient zero.” Probably the best known is Dr. John Snow’s Mapping of the cholera epidemic of London. Check out an interactive map at http://goo.gl/Ff9qSw

Seeking online photographs is another way to enhance the book. The Library of Congress contains many excellent documents and photographs related to the Spanish Influenza epidemic of 1918. Chronicling American contains fascinating newspaper articles published during the epidemic at http://www.loc.gov/rr/news/topics/pandemic.html. For more ideas, go to The Great Pandemic at http://www.flu.gov/pandemic/history/1918/

PATIENT ZERO mentions Google’s Flu Trends at http://www.google.org/flutrends/. Use this opportunity to introduce youth to this exciting source of data.

This book is particularly timely given the recent Ebola epidemics in Africa. Encourage youth to keep up-to-date on an interactive map from Healthmap at http://healthmap.org/ebola/

Another, recently published book RED MADNESS (2014) by Gail Jarrow focuses on the pellagra epidemic of the early 20th century in the American South caused by vitamin deficiency disease. Scientists found that enriching the diet with niacin helped to resolve the problem.

To learn more about maps in nonfiction literature, check out my articles in the October and December 2014 issues of Teacher Librarian.
Misses the Mark 8 novembre 2014
Par Charl A. Harper - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
On the surface, "Patient Zero" is a great idea for a book. It's a collection of epidemics through history, each beginning with the first victim, patient zero. Bubonic plague, cholera, Yellow Fever, typhoid, the Spanish Inflenza, Ebola and AIDS are represented. It's written for the middle school crowd. What a terrific way to introduce kids to the science of epidemiology. Only it's not. The book is very dry in its narrative style and speaking as a retired librarian who served this age group, I doubt it will hold their attention for long.

There is an are where the book excels and that's in the sidebars. Here the author discusess a number of related topics., including information pertaining to the medical practices of the day, the history of various diseases and the incredible work of medical pioneers.

Finally, I have to agree with a previous reviewer about the illustrations. While this is a book about conquering disease through human ingenuity, its also a book about death. Lots of it. And cartoonish drawings of happy bacteria and viruses, dead babies, patiients literally vomiting death and skulls and crossbones are out of place. They are disrespectful to those who died. To be fair, I'm sure this wasn't the author's intention. They are also distracting. Several times, I found myself pausing my reading to wonder how an illustration pertained to the text. The best example of this was the drawing of a rhino in the chapter on Ebola. I suppose the connection is that both are native to Africa.

I don't want to trash this book. There are areas mentioned above where the author succeeds in making her subject interesting. However, based on my experience, I don't believe "Patient Zero" will appeal to its target audience.

A copy of this book as provided to me by the publisher and NetGalley in return for an honest review.
Ebola, Yellow Fever and Cholera OH MY! plus a few others for a bonus. 23 octobre 2014
Par The Laundry Never Ends - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
If you are interested in germs and epidemics, and who isn't, but you try to remain scholarly instead of OMGWE'REGONNADIE!, and reading medical - speak is daunting, This book may be just the ticket.

Each epidemic receives it own chapter. It is chronological, so it goes from The Plague to AIDS. Each chapter has a real life tale of a person ( patient zero) who was at the epicenter when it all started. Then the common medical practices of the day ( blood letting to restore the Humours, etc) followed by a doctor or individual ( John Gaunt a shop keeper during The Plague who kept records on who died and changed medical history. ) who tried a new approach ( water supplies ( John Snow, not from Game of Thrones, but the Father of Epiemiology.) Dr. Lazer ( yellow fever), George Soper (Typhoid), Dr. Frost (Spanish Flu, which, btw, was called something different in every country it decimated. ) Dr. Peter Piot (Ebola), Dr's Barre-Sinoussi, Montagnier, Chermann &Gallo (AIDS).

I regaled my coworkers the history of Ebola and while they were moderately interested, I was informed I read weird stuff. Their comments will not stop me from regaling them on whatever my current obsession is.

There is a follow up on each disease today, and yes, the older ones are still out there, mainly in very poor countries.

A nice glossary for medical speak words is in back as well as Want To Learn More & Sources.

Well layed out. Nice cartoon germ drawings. Unbiased. Index, foreward, content,glossary and sources.

No leprosy, which I guess because it didn't kill millions, but still is frightful.

Great book for someone who likes Science and Medical Epidemics in a rational manner. Or like weird stuff to be saved for that " right" moment at Christmas dinner.
Great Intro to Epidemics! 21 novembre 2014
Par Julie Tsoukalas - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
I thought this book was very well written. The stories about the researchers and history of the diseases was engaging and kept my attention. Though the e-book version I received was a bit hard to navigate, I sorted it out after a while.

I thought the sidebars were very well done, and I learned a lot about the history of epidemics! And the difference between an epidemic and a pandemic. I don't know if the story from the beginning ever has a conclusion...I looked throughout my copy and couldn't find it. I'm not sure what epidemic was related there, but it went right into the story of the Black Plague. I am curious to know the outcome of that one! The only thing I would say is the section on AIDS was a bit much, if this is geared toward sixth grade.

I received this copy free from Annick Press Ltd. In exchange for an honest review.
Patient Zero 9 janvier 2015
Par D.A Clark - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
Patient Zero is an interesting and fun read suitable not only for children, but all ages. I loved the simple but fact filled way that each story was written and think that many kids would be fascinated by this book. The illustrations were cute and at times humorous.

The only thing I had a problem with was the format of the arc, which was atrocious and made it very hard to read, however that has no bearing in my rating.

Overall I think this children book definitely has the “cool” factor, and would make a great addition to any school library.

Note: I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review.
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