A Kid's Guide to Genealogy Book Reviews

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School Library Journal (Series Made Simple), November 2011

On the A Kid's Guide to Genealogy series

This series does a great job of helping kids realize that history is filled with interesting people and giving them tips about how to conduct genealogical research in a variety of creative ways. Each book engages readers from the start with a brief introduction about why family history is important. As with other books of this type, the approach is to look at family history as a puzzle and take on the role of a detective. Similar themes are reinforced throughout the set. Basic Genealogy is weaker than the others, with no keywords in bold and chapters that aren’t broken into sections, making the text appear dense even though the content is sound. Giving personal examples of their own family histories and using vivid photographs and illustrations, the authors speak to readers and show them how much fun research can be.

Booklist, October 1, 2011

On Basic Genealogy for Kids

Kids interested in who came before them get an introduction into the topic from the titles in A Kid’s Guide to Genealogy series. This volume starts, somewhat oddly, with the author’s rather tepid account of her husband’s research into their family trees; after learning that she’s eligible to join the Daughters of the American Revolution, Himnan writes that she has new interest when her husband “mumbles” about genealogy. From there, the chapters move on to a discussion of how family stories can interest kids in genealogy, followed by explanations of why cultures developed interest in the subject (inheritances, religion, family history), where to begin a genealogy project, and ways of doing research. Although the book does offer specific information, such as using census records and the pros and cons of professional ancestry services, bullet points throughout might have made the presentation more focused than narrative chapters. The photos are stock, but the design is inviting. Chapter notes and a glossary are appended, but what will be especially helpful is the extensive list of websites for further exploration.