January 2014 School Library Review

LATHAM, Donna. Music: Investigate the Evolution of American Sound. illus. by Bryan Stone. 128p. (Inquire and Investigate). chart. chron. further reading. glossary. index. websites. Nomad. 2013. Tr $21.95. ISBN 9781619301993; pap. $16.95. ISBN 9781619302037; ebk. $11.59. ISBN 9781619302006.

Gr 5-8--This overview is a STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) advocate's delight. The book begins by discussing the science behind how humans hear music. The narrative then turns historical as readers are taken through the various stages of American music, beginning with the music of slave life, then the patriotic music of the 19th century, followed by the emergence of jazz, rock and roll, and hip-hop in the 20th century. The author skillfully connects the origins of Yankee Doodle to the social activism of Bob Dylan, offering a nuanced examination of the topic. Interspersed throughout the text are sidebars that include notable quotes and quick facts about various musicians and bands. Each chapter concludes with an "Inquire and Investigate" spread that encourages readers to engage in activities ranging from making their own wooden fife to warbling with wineglasses. The handful of fill-in-the-blank boxes makes this book less than ideal for library circulation. Cartoon illustrations are more decorative than informative; the glossary is extensive. Overall, this is an admirable synopsis of the multicultural history of American music.-Keith Klang, Port Washington Public Library, NY

Klang, Keith

Source Citation   (MLA 7th Edition)

Klang, Keith. "Latham, Donna. Music: Investigate the Evolution of American Sound."School Library Journal Jan. 2014: 121. General OneFile. Web. 21 Jan. 2014.

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