Every story in these books are strange and astounding… but not all of them are real. Just like the old game in this book’s title, two out of every three stories are completely true, and one is an outright lie. Can you guess which? It’s not going to be easy! Some false stories are based on truth, and some of the true stories are just plain unbelievable. And they’re all accompanied by dozens of photos, maps, and illustrations. Amaze yourself and trick your friends as you sort out the fakes from the facts. A fun way for middle-grade readers to explore ways to separate fact from fiction.
Did you know that there is a fungus that can control the mind of an ant and make it do its bidding? Would you believe there is such a thing as a corpse flower—a ten-foot-tall plant with a blossom that smells like a zombie? How about a species of octopus that doesn’t live in water but rather lurks in trees in the Pacific Northwest? Acclaimed authors Ammi-Joan Paquette and Laurie Ann Thompson have teamed up to create a series of sneaky stories about the natural world designed to amaze, disgust, and occasionally bamboozle you. (Walden Pond Press/HarperCollins, June 2017)
Did you know that a young girl once saved an entire beach community from a devastating tsunami thanks to something she learned in her fourth-grade geography lesson? Or that there is a person alive today who generates her own magnetic field? Or how about the fact that Benjamin Franklin once challenged the Royal Academy of Brussels to devise a way to make farts smell good?
You know the game: Every story in this book is strange and astounding, but one out of every three is an outright lie. Some false stories are based on truth, and some of the true stories are just plain unbelievable! Don’t be fooled by the photos that accompany each story—it’s going to take all your smarts and some clever research to root out the alternative facts. Don’t believe everything you read! (Walden Pond Press/HarperCollins, June 2018)
Accolades for It’s Alive!:
- A Junior Library Guild selection
- Booklist‘s Editors’ Choice: Books for Youth, 2017
- Winner of the 2017 CYBILS Award for Elementary/Middle Grade Non-Fiction
- 2017 Nerdy Book Club Award winner for the Best Long Form Nonfiction
- 2018 Texas Topaz Nonfiction Reading List
- A Middle School Virginia Readers’ Choice Title for 2019-2020
- Booklist‘s “Lasting Connections” for Science
* “Considering the fresh attention being paid to teaching a skeptical approach to information evaluation, this series opener couldn’t be better timed.” –Booklist (starred review)
“An engaging, entertaining compendium that will inform and confound. (photos, maps, bibliography, index)” –Kirkus Reviews
Accolades for Histories and Mysteries:
“With the phrase ‘fake news’ being tossed around a great deal these days, this collection of stories in which one out of every three is a lie is both timely and entertaining…. Readers with a taste for trivia and the strange-but-true aspects of geography and history will find much to enjoy.” —Kirkus Reviews
“Even dyed-in-the-wool skeptics will be hard put to spot the ringers: footprints embedded in sandstone on the roof of Kentucky’s Mammoth Caves, dental fillings more than 12,000 years old, or a trove of lead tiles embedded with ancient Roman curses? Along with suggestions for side projects and discussions, the authors offer fact lists containing one false factoid as extra challenges to readers’ credulity. Happily, the back matter includes explanations that identify the baloney, as well as a savvy guide to evaluating information sources.” —Booklist
Resources for educators:
A Two Truths and a Lie: It’s Alive! Word Search Puzzle
ALA’s Two Truths and a Lie lesson plan by Jean Wolf Kirschenman in the AASL Learning4Life Lesson Plan Database
- Nonfiction Picture Book Wednesday – Two Truths and a Lie – It’s Alive! 5.31.17 by Michele Knott at Mrs. Knott’s Book Nook
- Can you tell the truth from a lie? by Maria Selke at Maria’s Melange
On the web:
Click here to see my blog posts related to these books.
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