Review also includes:
Is Helen Pregnant?, 978-1842341070
Jamal Is Overweight, 978-1842341117
Jon Drinks Alcohol, 978-1842341063
Kate Smokes Cigarettes, 978-1842341087
Why Won’t Kim Eat?, 978-1842341094
Something strange has happened to the photographs in these books. They have been enhanced, no doubt to make them ‘cool’, but the psychedelic green and purple faces are more peculiar than effective. Furthermore, text is often overprinted on to the pictures, making it messy and difficult to read. This is a pity, because the information is excellent. Clearly written in short sentences and basic vocabulary, the books pull no punches about the dangers inherent in these behaviour patterns. There is a great deal of precise information about, for instance, different kinds of drugs, what form they take, and how they affect the body. On the left side of each double-page spread, we meet a particular 13-year-old with a problem: smoking, alcohol dependency, being overweight, etc., and on the facing page, we are given information about the problem. This format works well, and we are able to assess the various stages that the teenager is going through by virtue of the facts given. We see why this particular child is prone to this behaviour, through peer pressure, stress, family tensions or psychological difficulties. In each case, the child pulls up and realises what he or she is doing before it is too late. (No, Helen is not pregnant!) A good series, marred by over-enthusiastic technology in the illustrations.
There is a basic glossary and a list of helpline phone numbers and/or websites in each book.