Jeff Savage is an award-winning author of more than 170 books includes biographies of positive role models in sports and entertainment, current events, and historical accounts of settling the West. He is a nine-time winner of the International Reading Association-Children’s Book Council Children’s Choice Award and winner of the Voice of Youth Advocates Non-Fiction Honor Award. More than 100 of his books have been adopted by the National Accelerated Reader Program.
Raised in the Bay Area suburb of Fremont, California, Jeff’s parents worked in the public school system. They stressed to him the importance of studying and getting good grades. His hard work paid off when he was awarded an academic scholarship to UCLA. He later attended UC San Diego where he graduated with a degree in journalism and communications. Jeff’s first career job was as a sportswriter. He wrote articles for nearly a decade for the San Diego Union-Tribune.
Today, Jeff, his wife Nancy-a teacher-and their two sons live in the Sacramento, California area.
Long before your great, great grandparents were around, and much earlier than television monitors and GPS devices, America, west of the Mississippi River, was wild and free. Learn about the hardships and realities of country life at its rawest, purest, and most “inhospitable-est!” The glamorous life of the American cowboy as portrayed in films and television depict an idealized, romantic, and completely exaggerated life led by these men of yore. Savage presents life on a horse and herding cattle for what it was: dangerous and uncomfortable. Stampedes were common occurrences, sometimes just a lightning strike or roll of thunder would send cattle careening in all directions, at any hour of the day or night. No, it was not always a bed of roses for those in the West, but some would not have it any other way. This book in the “Tales of the Wild West” series packs a lot of material into a small book. Most readers could finish this entire book in one sitting, but the short chapters and plethora of photographs and drawings allow this to be read piece by piece equally as well. Besides cowboy life, consideration is given to women “cowboys,” homesteaders, farm hand duties, and what some did for work during the winter months. Following the text are bibliographical notes, a useful glossary, and index for researching and gleaning a greater appreciation for this lifestyle. Do not let the cover fool you, this is not a book about “rough and tumble” cowboys and Indian fights or drama. It is merely a look at the historical part cowboys played in shaping America in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries-and it does a marvelous job at that. Reviewer: Elizabeth Young (Children’s Literature).
Top 25 Hockey Skills, Tips, and Tricks
This title is part of a six-book series on standard American sports which includes titles about baseball, basketball, football, gymnastics, and soccer, presenting twenty-five informative points in forty-eight pages. Brief paragraphs, boxes with facts, tips, or historical information and photos of major stars or action snapshots cover the basics of each sport. A one-page glossary of main terms, a short list of similar books, several Internet addresses, and an index complete the coverage. As the fastest team sport, hockey depends on the skating skills of the players to change direction, vary speed, and control movement. Savage explains this to young skaters and discusses balance, posture, and skate positions for such maneuvers as turning in a curve, skating backward, and making a fast stop. Savage continues by discussing the proper grip for handling the stick and controlling the puck. He covers dribbling, forehand and backhand passing, fancy (advanced) passes, and the best ways to receive a pass. Next the focus is on scoring a goal—where, when, and how to shoot even by scoring on a rebound. Points 16 to 20 cover defense team action from being in position to stick checking, body contact (with a reminder that most youth leagues do not permit body checking), and goaltending. The last five points deal with “Getting Ready to Play,” suggesting stretching exercises, nutrition tips, maximizing practice sessions, positive mental attitude, and good sportsmanship. Savage conveys a good knowledge of hockey to his audience of young players in an engaging combination of explanatory text, appropriate photos, and interesting facts. Recommended purchase. Reviewer: Patricia M. Steelman (Children’s Literature).
Deadly Hard-Hitting Sports
Do you think that having fun cannot put your life at risk? Nine recreational sports that maximize danger along with fun, from street luging to free solo climbing, can be found on land, on and under the sea, and in the air. In this picture book length chapter book, two and four-page spreads summarize each high risk sport in fact-filled prose that is divided into short paragraphs. The attractions of each activity, as well as the risks, are listed in a straightforward, though upbeat manner (“The adventure is delightful-until disaster strikes!”). Sidebars and captions in contrast color offer interesting details and related facts. The full color photographs serve as a backdrop to the printed information. These collaged visuals “read” like a second, supporting narrative. Savage’s book ends with a list of resources titled “Further Information” and an index. The reader is invited to download additional free, educational resource material from the publisher’s website. This book, part of the “Shock Zone Deadly and Dangerous” series that offers “high-energy topics, powerful reads,” lives up to its promotional material. As an overview to dangerous sports, Savage’s book would be a good addition to an upper elementary library resource center on extreme sports or as additional resource material on sports medicine. Reviewer: Hazel Buys (Children’s Literature).
Jeff Savage’s program has been endorsed by educators nationwide. Jeff’s presentation motivates even the most reluctant readers and will enrich schools reading and writing programs. His program and books meet the current state curriculum and Common Core standards.
To learn more about Jeff Savage and his publications please visit www.jeffsavage.com/.