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The oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico that began on April 20, 2010, may be the worst environmental disaster in U.S. history. In "Oil Spill! Disaster in the Gulf of Mexico," prolific nonfiction writer and Florida resident Landau gives young readers the essential facts about the spill. The oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico that began on April 20, 2010, may be the worst environmental disaster in U.S. history. In "Oil Spill! Disaster in the Gulf of Mexico," prolific nonfiction writer and Florida resident Landau gives young readers the essential facts about the spill.


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The oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico that began on April 20, 2010, may be the worst environmental disaster in U.S. history. In "Oil Spill! Disaster in the Gulf of Mexico," prolific nonfiction writer and Florida resident Landau gives young readers the essential facts about the spill. The oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico that began on April 20, 2010, may be the worst environmental disaster in U.S. history. In "Oil Spill! Disaster in the Gulf of Mexico," prolific nonfiction writer and Florida resident Landau gives young readers the essential facts about the spill.

30 review for Oil Spill!: Disaster in the Gulf of Mexico

  1. 4 out of 5

    Riley Conway

    Oil Spill! Disaster in the Gulf of Mexico is a new non-fiction book by Elaine Landau that chronicles the Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico last year. It’s broken into several sections that cover the explosion, stoppage of the leak, the devastating affects on sea life and local economies, and suggestions for what concerned readers can do. Landau does an excellent job of illustrating that there were no quick, neat, or easy solutions. Stopping the leak and conducting th Oil Spill! Disaster in the Gulf of Mexico is a new non-fiction book by Elaine Landau that chronicles the Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico last year. It’s broken into several sections that cover the explosion, stoppage of the leak, the devastating affects on sea life and local economies, and suggestions for what concerned readers can do. Landau does an excellent job of illustrating that there were no quick, neat, or easy solutions. Stopping the leak and conducting the clean up have been “messy” jobs. And without being preachy, she suggests concrete things readers can do to prevent such disasters in the future (like writing a congressperson about exploring and investing in cleaner energy, or—closer to home—reducing the amount of energy you use to decrease our dependence on fossil fuels). I like the multi-pronged approach of the book, viewing the story from several perspectives to get a sense of the breadth of the disaster and what it took (and continues to take) to counteract the devastation. But it makes everything feel a bit distant. I wish there was a unifying thread in Oil Spill, tying together the separate sections of the book. As it stands, it’s like a collection of interesting topical essays about the disaster. But Oil Spill is very readable. I appreciate the list of other disastrous spills at the end of the book that contextualizes how serious the Gulf spill is. And the glossary of terms is helpful for young (and older!) readers. I’m struck by the violence of much of the terminology used by people addressing this disaster: top kill, junk shot, dead well, etc. It’s appropriate, I guess, since it’s almost like we’re at war with the disaster. Battling. Fighting. Defending sea life (and a way of life) on the Gulf Coast. And the book is timely. Not only because the Gulf region is still feeling the affects of the spill (and will for quite some time). But because we’re constantly reminded of the volatility of our energy sources. Wars and political upheaval in the Middle East (Egypt, Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan, etc.) affect the price of oil. An earthquake and tsunami in Japan have caused crises at nuclear facilities. These are things that all of us need to think about—even kids. Maybe specially kids. Someday today’s children will take the reins on energy use and policy. And Landau manages to present a compelling read that asks them important questions without being pessimistic or (as I said before) preachy. It’s not an angry book. But it also doesn’t gloss over the tough stuff. Oil Spill challenges its readers to think about the real world consequences of meeting contemporary energy needs.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Lindsay

    This book details the 2010 BP oil rig leak in the Gulf of Mexico. Fantastic illustrations, photographs, and maps help to tell the story of the tragic environmental disaster and its aftermath. The factual content of this book puts it in the informational book genre. Opinions and judgements are not expressed regarding the disaster, though the book does encourage readers to consider ways in which these types of disasters could be prevented. These suggestions are being passed on to the reader from sc This book details the 2010 BP oil rig leak in the Gulf of Mexico. Fantastic illustrations, photographs, and maps help to tell the story of the tragic environmental disaster and its aftermath. The factual content of this book puts it in the informational book genre. Opinions and judgements are not expressed regarding the disaster, though the book does encourage readers to consider ways in which these types of disasters could be prevented. These suggestions are being passed on to the reader from scientists and President Obama. The author does not attempt to tell the reader what to do but instead tries to get the reader thinking about the facts. I would use this book for teaching expository text reading comprehension methods. It is a nice length of a book to use in the classroom when doing a unit on oceans, water pollution, the water cycle, or animal habitats. I would take students on a "text walk" of the book, pointing out and discussing the text's features such as a table of contents, chapter headings, vocabulary words, glossary, index, and supplemental book list and activities in the back. Students could work in pairs to do paired reading and work together to gather the main idea from each chapter. In the back of the book, the author provides ways that the reader can make a difference if he/she so desires. These suggestions make for great class projects for supplementing the book. The author suggests that readers urge their families to consume less energy in their homes and community lives. Using this suggestion, a teacher could have students create energy conservation posters to hang up either in school or at home. Another suggestion the author gives is to write a letter to your state representative. This would be great classroom project to tie social studies and civic engagement into the reading lesson. This book has a grade equivalent reading level of 5.3. I think that with enough support and scaffolding, the book could be used with students as young as 4th grade and remains an interesting topic and book format for students into 6th grade.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Karen Ball

    Review copy from Lerner Publishing April 2010: The Deepwater Horizon drilling rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico, about 50 miles off of the Louisiana coast. Eleven crew members died, and seventeen others were injured. The giant drilling rig burned for two days before it sank into the Gulf, but the worst damage was yet to come: the pipe from the oil well in the sea floor had broken and was leaking massive amounts of poisonous, thick oil. Ten days after the accident, the oil spill was the size of t Review copy from Lerner Publishing April 2010: The Deepwater Horizon drilling rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico, about 50 miles off of the Louisiana coast. Eleven crew members died, and seventeen others were injured. The giant drilling rig burned for two days before it sank into the Gulf, but the worst damage was yet to come: the pipe from the oil well in the sea floor had broken and was leaking massive amounts of poisonous, thick oil. Ten days after the accident, the oil spill was the size of the state of Delaware! This is the story of how scientists, engineers, and oil rig crews worked together, trying many different ways to contain the oil spill, plug the well, and try to prevent more damage to the environment. Not everything worked well, and people and animals suffered because of the spill: people lost their jobs and homes, animals were killed when the toxic oil spread into their habitats, and in some areas, the environmental effects will last for years. Well-written and exceptionally well-designed, with excellent photos, graphs and maps, this is a timely story of disaster, hard work and tough choices. While avoiding the political controversy of the spill, Landau focuses on the environmental aspects and consequences. She includes short explanations of five other oil spill disasters, including the Exxon Valdez spill in Alaska, and the Persian Gulf spills during the Gulf War of the early 1990's. There is also a section about what students can choose to do to make a difference! 5th grade and up.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Heidi

    The strengths of this book include the clear writing, the diagrams, and most of the photographs. The cover is especially powerful I think. I also appreciated the map which aids the reader in understanding just how big the disaster was/is. The brief history of past oil spills that helps put this disaster in perspective and allows the reader compare this oil spill to others of a similar size. This could also lead to research into recovery strategies. The glossary, source notes, index, and further The strengths of this book include the clear writing, the diagrams, and most of the photographs. The cover is especially powerful I think. I also appreciated the map which aids the reader in understanding just how big the disaster was/is. The brief history of past oil spills that helps put this disaster in perspective and allows the reader compare this oil spill to others of a similar size. This could also lead to research into recovery strategies. The glossary, source notes, index, and further reading lists are appreciated. The resources listed are mostly age appropriate. The book does have a few weaknesses. First, there is the suggestion that President Obama is the one who came up with the idea of exploring alternative energy sources. Alternative energy sources have been explored for decades and will continue to be long into the future. One of the main problems with alternative energy is the costs involved for the benefit received, but this is mentioned only indirectly. Another problem is that the photographs that were clearly taken under water are confusing, it's hard to tell what is what. More detailed labeling would have helped. All in all the book presents a clearly organized and easy to follow description of the disaster and some of the consequences that all of us will have to live with, most especially the plants, animals, and people who live along the Gulf Coast.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Amanda Snow

    Originally published at: www.apatchworkofbooks.com I've been waiting for a great book to be published about last year's Gulf oil spill and Elaine Landau has done a fantastic job with this one. The bold, in-your-face cover is an immediate introduction to what readers will find inside the book, which is chock full of great info. The oil spill back in April of 2010 was the biggest spill in the history of the United States and thus deserves an in-depth explanation of how it happened, what trauma it c Originally published at: www.apatchworkofbooks.com I've been waiting for a great book to be published about last year's Gulf oil spill and Elaine Landau has done a fantastic job with this one. The bold, in-your-face cover is an immediate introduction to what readers will find inside the book, which is chock full of great info. The oil spill back in April of 2010 was the biggest spill in the history of the United States and thus deserves an in-depth explanation of how it happened, what trauma it caused, and how it's being fixed. Landau breaks down all the "stuff" into a very readable format, while still including all the essential facts. The text is not at all heavy (very important when it comes to non-fiction for kids) and is mixed in with detailed photographs of the water, the animals, and the cleanup effort. Great illustrations of what went on underwater are also included. The book is broken up into 5 chapters, each with a specific theme, following the timeline of the spill. Chapter 1 is all about the day of the spill and Chapter 5 ends up with "What's to Be Done." There is also a section on "Oil's Messy History," explaining a bit about other oil spills, as well as a section on what we can do from our own homes/towns. A very nice resource for classrooms and libraries.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Andabo Harris

    This is a very informative picturebook by Elaine Landau. It is an in depth assessment of the events leading up to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill of April 2010, and the response by British Petroleum which resulted in the spill being capped in July 2010. I can clearly remember following the events of this oil spill while the disaster unfolded during this time. At the time the entire world was fixated on the coverage being provided. After reading Landau's work on this disaster, I must admit that I This is a very informative picturebook by Elaine Landau. It is an in depth assessment of the events leading up to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill of April 2010, and the response by British Petroleum which resulted in the spill being capped in July 2010. I can clearly remember following the events of this oil spill while the disaster unfolded during this time. At the time the entire world was fixated on the coverage being provided. After reading Landau's work on this disaster, I must admit that I really was not aware of how impactful this spill was at the time, not only for the people that it affected, but also for the oil drilling industry as a whole. Eleven individuals lost their lives in the explosion, and many more were injured. This incident which is now considered the largest of its kind has caused new policies to be enacted which are expected to ensure that something like this never happens again. Landau's work in this book is sure to be informative to anyone who gives it a read.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    I was impressed with this book. It articulates a very complicated issue at a level young children (Hank is 5) can understand without skipping over details. We would have liked to see more pictures, particularly pictures of the robots that were sent down to work on repairing the blow-out preventer. We have read this book twice already and I'm sure we will read it again a few more times before we return it to the library-- a positive measure of a good non-fiction children's book in my view! I was impressed with this book. It articulates a very complicated issue at a level young children (Hank is 5) can understand without skipping over details. We would have liked to see more pictures, particularly pictures of the robots that were sent down to work on repairing the blow-out preventer. We have read this book twice already and I'm sure we will read it again a few more times before we return it to the library-- a positive measure of a good non-fiction children's book in my view!

  8. 5 out of 5

    Charlotte Osborn-bensaada

    This book rather dispassionately details the events surrounding the BP Oil spill during the spring and summer of 2009. It is good at giving basic facts and pictures and diagrams explaining what happened. I think in some respects it strives to be to even handed and fails to show the scale of the disaster that this spill was for people and animal life.

  9. 5 out of 5

    babyhippoface

    The Deepwater Horizon oil spill is explained for young readers in this non-fiction picture book. Loads of photos and illustrations create interest. Although it's really too long to read in one sitting in a classroom, it's still a useful resource to help kids understand "the big deal" about the situation. Elementary libraries will want to add this book to their shelves. The Deepwater Horizon oil spill is explained for young readers in this non-fiction picture book. Loads of photos and illustrations create interest. Although it's really too long to read in one sitting in a classroom, it's still a useful resource to help kids understand "the big deal" about the situation. Elementary libraries will want to add this book to their shelves.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Becky

    A well done explanation for children of the 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. This book is good, but it is already dated because much of it was written as the spill was happening. The book needs a final chapter about what has happened in the years since the spill.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Leigh

    Graphic recounting of how horrible oil spills are. Good citations, further reading, maps, photographs and good writing make this a excellent source for homework or just learning about the dark side of our addiction to petroleum.

  12. 4 out of 5

    PWRL

    SM

  13. 5 out of 5

    Abby Taylor

  14. 5 out of 5

    Alyssa

  15. 4 out of 5

    Amanda Hamilton

  16. 4 out of 5

    Elisabeth

  17. 4 out of 5

    Aurora Leos

  18. 5 out of 5

    Lori

  19. 4 out of 5

    Christopher

  20. 4 out of 5

    Phillip Albrecht

  21. 4 out of 5

    Bree

  22. 4 out of 5

    Arien

  23. 5 out of 5

    Sharon Wishnow-Ritchey

  24. 5 out of 5

    Sandy

  25. 5 out of 5

    Cathy

  26. 5 out of 5

    Emily

  27. 4 out of 5

    Carrie

  28. 4 out of 5

    Chacha Centeno

  29. 5 out of 5

    John

  30. 4 out of 5

    Nikole

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