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Gaia’s Children By Manisha Gadekar, India Book House, 1997, Rs. 55.00   Gaia’s Children is a charming collection of stories about the various living forms which coexist on our earth, creating a whole. The aim of the stories in this book is to explain and create an awareness among the children about the earth. Each story in this book tells a fascinating tale about the decreasing natural life that occupies it’s own niche on our living planet. An introduction to each tale gives us important details about a species. It also serves to explain certain important issues about conserving the natural life that inadvertently sustains us.   The tales prove to us how inhuman we are towards nature and wildlife to fulfill our needs. The stories prove how greedy we people have become, that we kill animals for their meat, medicinal values and money. However stories like ‘The Caterpillar and the Lime Tree’ and ‘Flamingo city’ show us how kind, gentle and helpful nature is. ‘The Arrogant Tusker’ and ‘The Mischievous Macaque’ are stories which tell us teamwork is necessary for all living organisms and two heads are better than one.’ Some other stories show that animals maintain a symbiotic relationship with other organisms.   But we humans still don’t realize the importance of nature. We don’t realize when we cut a tree or kill an animal we disturb the food chain which in turn disturbs the eco-system. We also suffer because of the ecological imbalance. This is proved by the global warming and extinction of animals.   Harsh Jain Class VIII, Vasant Valley School, New Delhi. Mostly Friendly, 13 ghost stories. By Rachael Macbean, Scholastic, 2006, pp. 95, Rs. 80.00   This book is a must read for any pre-teen or teenager. It is well written and uncovers the positive side of the misunderstood so called ‘ghosts’.   The author has put in a lot of effort in compiling these stories and among them the Santa Claus, The Talisman and Sattu Pehelwan are the best. Each of these fabulous stories has an amazing and meaningful taught and moral behind them. Every line makes the reader wonder what happens next as the stories are well written and follow a sequential link. This book provides young adults to overcome the misperception of ghosts being scary.  Hats off to the author for writing immaculate stories that are just right for this age group. Kudos to the author.   Arjun Madan, ...

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