The recent interest in creating engaging and accessible information literature together with the emphasis both on diversity and empathy in books for young people has seen a revival in telling the stories of famous or important but perhaps unsung, men and women. These can range from anthologies to individual biographies. Jane Goodall by Anita Ganeri is one of the latter. It is one in a series which will include not just names from the past but contemporary personages as Jane is herself.
Anita Ganeri is an experienced creator of information texts. This is, as a result, a well crafted engaging story. And it is a story. There are no sound bites. Here is an extended narrative through which we meet Jane Goodall herself from her early childhood to the present day. Interspersed are what in an old fashioned book would be a foot-note, but here are presented fully on the page, is the extra information a young reader might require ( the difference between the ape and the monkey; apartheid). Just As is the case with the foot-note there is no prescription to read these pages and they are differentiated in font and design from the main text. The neat line illustrations add further life to the words as do the quotes, while the whole is rounded off by an index; it may be a story but it is not fiction, This is biography but truly accessible to a young reader. Part of the Trail Blazers series this and its companions are ones to look for especially for those whose interest might lean towards real life inspiration to feed the imagination. My only caveat, the use of white font on a grey ground for some quotations is not easy to read