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Elizabeth Sirimarco (1966-) - Sidelights

books american voices machines

A prolific author of nonfiction titles for curious-minded preschoolers, Elizabeth Sirimarco has written on everything from Humvees to trains to farm combines in a series of short, easy-to-understand picture books that explore how many things work. Sometimes published under the pen names Hal Rogers and E. S. Budd, Sirimarco's books include Street Cleaners, Military Helicopers, Milking Machines, and BMX Bicycles, to name just a few titles. Featuring colored photographs that clearly identify machine parts and a glossary of terms for readers wishing to expand the text for the particularly curious, Sirimarco's books have proven especially useful for children who come into contact with large machines through exposure to farm life, construction sites, or even suburban life. In Booklist Carolyn Phelan wrote that toddlers whose interest is "big trucks will find [these books] . . . right up their alley," and noted that each volume's illustrations complement "the texts quite effectively."

Other works of nonfiction for younger audiences include books on health issues such as AIDS and eating disorders, books on cultural groups, and biographies of famous Americans such as golfer Tiger Woods, film director Stephen Spielberg, and U.S. President Thomas Jefferson. In collaboration with her husband, photographer David M. Budd, Sirimarco has also produced three books introducing young people to activities that occur in the workaday world, among them At the Barber, At the Bank, and At the Construction Site.

In addition to her books for young pre-readers, Sirimarco has also authored several books that shed light on contemporary issues for middle-trade students. In American Voices from the Cold War, American Voices from the Civil Rights Movement, and American Voices from Slavery, she collects speeches, newspaper articles and editorials, letters, and songs from the period under study, illuminating the diverse viewpoints of the American public during times of controversy. As Sirimarco told Something about the Author, with the "American Voices" series "I feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to write about difficult subjects that have challenged my research and reasoning skills. American history is rich and complex. What makes me want to write is the incredible amount I learn with each project; there's always something new to keep me inspired."

Biographical and Critical Sources

PERIODICALS

Booklist, January 1, 2001, Carolyn Phelan, review of Street Cleaners and Combines, p. 962.

Elizabeth Sirimarco's 2001 biography Tiger Woods profiles the sports star whose record-breaking performances have brought a new generation of players to the game of golf. (Photograph by Allsport USA/David Cannon.)

School Library Journal, January, 2001, Eldon Younce, review of Combines, Milking Machines, and Plows, p. 122; May, 2001, Janice C. Hayes, review of Tiger Woods, p. 144.*

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