Musical Instruments: From Flutes Carved of Bone, to Lutes, to Modern Electric Guitars

Scholastic Books, Author, Gallimard Jeunesse, Author Scholastic $19.95 (45p) ISBN 978-0-590-47638-6
Launching the Voyages of Discovery series, these distinctive volumes deploy all manner of visual matter to teach a variety of nonfiction topics. In addition to their textured, paper-over-board covers, their sturdy, glossy pages, their crisp, meticulously rendered illustrations and carefully reproduced photos, they feature a generous spectrum of fold-outs, miniature ``books within-a-book,'' acetate overlays and other intriguing interactive elements. Exploring Space, the most encompassing and sensational of the four books, explains such phenomena as the movement of the planets, the development of the telescope and space exploration. Among the inventive bonuses here are two sky clocks that rotate to demonstrate changes in the night sky and a quadruple-page spread of various constellations that become 3-D when viewed through the ``magic glasses'' slipped into a pocket on the back cover. Concise historical overviews of art; fire and light; and music are presented in the other titles, all of which include reusable vinyl stickers to be placed on specific spots on the pages, as well as a detailed index, glossary, time line and sources of additional information. Though each volume is well worth its relatively steep cover price, Scholastic is introducing this series with a special offer: each book includes a coupon for a $5 rebate on the purchase of two additional Voyages of Discovery titles. Ages 8-up. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 08/29/1994
Release date: 09/01/1994
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