The Girl’s Guide to Building a Fort: Outdoor & Indoor Adventures for Hands-On Girls – written by Jenny Fieri, illustrated by Alexis Seabrook

The Girl’s Guide to Building a Fort: Outdoor & Indoor Adventures for Hands-On Girls – written by Jenny Fieri, illustrated by Alexis Seabrook, Andrews McMeel Publishing, 9781524861179, 2021

Format: Paperback

Rating:  1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 3

What did you like about the book? This book has a huge variety of ways readers can become active! The introduction encourages readers to explore and try new things to find what’s right for each person. Though it often references “hands-on girls” the rest of the content would be appropriate for all genders. Each chapter focuses on a different topic – science, trailblazing, athletics, art, building, and cooking. At the beginning of each chapter are two lists of materials – one for basic supplies, and one for more complex projects. Many different types of activities are described from tongue twisters, jump rope, and backyard scavenger hunts to camping, fishing, and building a tree swing. Many can be done independently, though a number require adult supervision or assistance. Badges for each chapter and some bonus badges are referenced in the beginning of the book, and then stickers for each badge are at the end. Readers who choose to work for badges will get much use out of the book. Backmatter includes additional books for further reading in each topic, as well as an index. 

Anything you did not like about the book. This book would have really benefited from more images. There are many long written descriptions for how to do various projects, and a few images or diagrams would make it easier to follow and more visually appealing. While the illustrations were well done and added color to some of the pages, they were minimal and did not supplement the text. 

To whom would you recommend this book? Older children and tweens, especially girls, who like being active and doing projects. Though it is different, readers who like Girls Who Code or We Are Makers: Real Women and Girls Shaping Our World (Richards) would likely enjoy this as well. 

Who should buy this book? Elementary school librarians, middle school librarians, public librarians

Where would you shelve it? Nonfiction (600s)

Should we (librarians) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? No

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Sarah Bickel, Greenlodge Elementary School, Dedham Massachusetts

Date of review: July 17, 2021

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