Mad for Ads: How Advertising Gets (and Stays) in Our Heads – written by Erica Fyvie, illustrations by Ian Turner

  Mad for Ads: How Advertising Gets (and Stays) in Our Heads – written by Erica Fyvie, illustrations by Ian Turner, Kids Can Press, 9781525301315, 2021

Format: Hardcover

Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 5

 What did you like about the book? After reading this book, I don’t think kids will look at their world in the same way again! This book illustrates the little ways that advertising enters our lives–whether we realize it or not. The book is organized into seven chapters that highlight different components of advertising. This includes a mini lesson in marketing, the many different kinds of ads, how your brain processes advertising, how marketers gather information to generate ads, and even a timeline of the history of advertising. Each chapter is loaded with information presented in a funny, yet informative manner, that makes all this information easy to understand. Each chapter tailors the information to something that would pertain to a child, making all this information to be more relatable to their own lives. For example, this book points out how items on a shelf in a store are at the eye level of the target audience. So, items marketed to an adult are higher on a shelf than those marketed to a child. There is also information on how advertisers pair a product with something that is appealing to their target audience–for example, puppies and a new bike. 

The bold and bright illustrations provided by Ian Turner are not only entertaining in this book, but highly useful in comprehending all the information. For example, a two-page illustration points out all the different places in a neighborhood where advertising is present. Also, another illustration demonstrates how different parts of our brains react to advertising. There is so much information packed in this book and the illustrations really help to break up the information into more manageable chunks.

Anything you did not like about the book. Nothing

To whom would you recommend this book? I would recommend this book to children eight years old and older, especially if they are doing a unit on advertising or persuasion in their classroom. I also think older children will find this information interesting, even if it is not something they are studying in school.

Who should buy this book? Public school libraries, this is a great tool for a classroom that is doing a unit on advertising or persuasion.

Where would you shelve it? Nonfiction

 Should we (librarians) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? Yes.

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Kristin Guay, former youth services librarian.

Date of review: May 3, 2021

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