The Deadliest Diseases THen and Now
The deadly outbreak of plague known as the Great Mortality, which struck Europe in the mid 1300s and raged for four centuries, wiped out more than 25 million people in the course of just two years. With its vicious onslaught, life changed for millions of people almost instantaneously.
Deadly pandemics have always been a part of life, from the Great Mortality of the Middle Ages, to the Spanish Influenza outbreak of 1918, to the eruption of COVID-19 in our own century. Many of these diseases might have seemed like things to read about in history books -- until the unthinkable happened, and our own lives were turned upside down by the emergence of the novel coronavirus.
As we learn more about COVID-19, we may be curious about pandemics of the past. Knowing how humans fought diseases long ago may help us face those of today. In this fast-paced, wide-ranging story filled with facts, pictures, and diagrams about diseases -- from plague to smallpox to polio to flu -- critically acclaimed Sibert Honor author Deborah Hopkinson brings voices from the past to life in this exploration of the deadliest diseases of then and now.
The fact that this is available in paperback makes it a great choice for readers who are really interested in information about other periods of history that had to deal with pandemics. Children struggle to make sense of their world, and need lots of information about COVID and other diseases so that they can understand what is happening. The historical perspective is helpful, because it can assure them that as horrible as this event is, the world will survive.
I'm looking forward to the next book in the series, Hurricanes Then and Now, which is a much needed book in the wake of Hurricane Ida.