Reviews for Forensics : Uncover the Science and Technology of Crime Scene Investigation

Booklist Reviews 2013 July #1
Forensics is defined as the study and analysis of evidence in order to solve crimes. Like other titles in the Inquire and Investigate series, this book focuses on a high-interest topic in a cutting-edge field to reinforce young people's understanding of the scientific method. Mooney focuses on both the skills and techniques used by professionals in law enforcement. More than 20 hands-on activities and experiments accompany straightforward explanations of topics such as evidence collection, crime scene investigation, and laboratory analysis of fingerprints and DNA. A brief chronological history of forensics serves as an introduction, and comic book-style illustrations adorn each experiment. A list of relevant books, museums and science centers, and websites is offered for additional information. This serves as practice for the essential skill of forming a logical hypothesis and testing it using basic methods of inquiry, making it an appealing and age-appropriate STEM resource. Copyright 2013 Booklist Reviews.

School Library Journal Reviews 2013 July

Gr 6-9--Fans of the many popular crime-scene television programs will feel right at home with this title. After an introduction to the field of forensics, the remaining six chapters look at how evidence is found, identified, and interpreted. "Fingerprints," "Blood," and "Bones and Bodies" focus on physical evidence. The last three chapters consider other types of evidence including residues and forgeries but not cybercrime. Each chapter opens with an anticipatory question. Generous side columns are filled with "Forensic Facts," explanations of forensic careers, and other miscellaneous information. Cartoon illustrations mostly fill up space and sometimes work against the text. The "Inquire & Investigate" activities that conclude each chapter are closely tied to the topic and will give readers hands-on "behind-the-scenes" experience. The instructions can get dense but are not overly technical. The most involved projects are perhaps the DNA extraction activity and the "Shoe Print Impressions." A few activities use open flames and some require readers to find their own recipes for ingredients but provide no URL suggestions. Frequent charts and occasional graphs are needed for record keeping and analysis but no examples are provided. A complete glossary explains the many forensics specific terms. The total package is worthy of consideration.--Carol S. Surges, formerly at Longfellow Middle School, Wauwatosa, WI

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