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This book is a fantastic introduction into the world of geology and gemmology. Comprehensive, clear, beautifully-illustrated, well-organised– everything I could have ever asked from from a non-fiction book.

It starts with basic definitions. What are rocks and minerals and why do we study them? The short answer is because they let us have a glimpse into the past and help us predict our future. What else do geologists study? It turns out they study a huge variety of things, including earthquakes and even sharks!

It is impossible to discuss geology without having a brief look at the structure of the Earth. And here was the fun fact that I had somehow overlooked before: the temperature of the inner core of our planet is the same as the temperature of the Sun! We literally walk on our own little Sun!

Then the book gives an overview of the three main kinds of rocks: igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic with beautiful examples helping the young reader identify and remember them.

Another fun fact: Pele’s hair is not named after the legendary Brazilian football player, but rather after the Hawaiian Goddess of volcanoes! ‘It forms when lava is thrown out of a volcano and stretched into thin wispy golden strands by the wind’.

Being a very visual person, I loved the spreads that dealt with these world wonders: Kilauea lava flows (Hawaii), Giant’s Causeway (Northern Ireland), Mount Erebus, Halong Bay (Vietnam) and, of course, The Wave (Arizona, the USA).

It isn’t only the Earth rocks that are discussed in the book. Mars and the Moon get their own special mention. Fun fact No3: Did you know that because there is no wind on our sattelite, the Moon dust called regolith preserves in extraordinary detail the footprint of Neil Armstrong?

The section on gemstones could have easily been expanded into a book on its own. I just swooned at the wealth of information and the beauty of these treasures.
More fun facts:

  • Diamonds come in all sorts of colours, including black.
  • Did you know that ruby and sapphire are actually the same mineral called corundum?

I could continue and continue, but I think by now you already see that I am totally in love with rocks and this wonderful book.

Thank you to NetGalley and Wide Eyed Edition for the ARC provided in exchange for an honest opinion.

Title: The Rocking Book of Rocks

Authors: Amy Ball and Florence Bullough; Illustrations: Anna Alanko

Published by: WideEyed Editions

Expected Publication date: 6th of August 2019

  • Are you interested in geology and gemmology?
  • What’s the best children’s non-fiction book you have read/seen recently?
  • What are the ingredients of a successful children’s non-fition book in your opinion?
  • Have you been to any of the wonder places mentioned in this post?


6 replies on “The Rocking Book of Rocks #Book review # Children’s non-fiction”

  1. One of the things I love about children’s nonfiction is how much ground they cover in only a few pages. And when they’re about something as broad as geology (and done right), they can be an amazing introduction to a topic— even for adult readers! Sounds like this one is packed with tons of useful facts. Great review.

    Liked by 1 person

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