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Diving to a Deep-Sea Volcano (Scientists in the Field
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Kids expecting tales of researchers outrunning lava flows may find this book's true focus--hydrothermal vents and their ecosytems--a touch bland. But as in previous photo-essays in the Scientists in the Field series, the profile of an enthusiastic scientist injects excitement into even unassuming facts. Here, the author of Swimming with Hammerhead Sharks (2001), in the same series, introduces marine biologist Rich Lutz, who studies the rich communities supported by heat-spewing fissures in the seabed. The high-tech submersible vessel used lends the expeditions some of the glamour of space journeys, and children will respond to the down-to-earth language (one region razed by sizzling chemicals inspires the quip, "Tubeworm Barbecue"). There are, however, some problems with organisation, such as the placement of the definition of hydrothermal vent deep within a sidebar, and a section about the filming of a now-closed IMAX movie feels extraneous. But readers will have no trouble picking up on the passion of a job that allows one to "find out some of the fundamental secrets of the universe." Jennifer Mattson
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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A balanced mixture of biography and science that gives children a well-rounded exposure to intellectual pursuit. Enthusiastic text expresses a sense of adventure and effectively depicts the thrill of new discoveries. . . . A general purchase for libraries with a significant science readership.School Library Journal

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