Connie Goldsmith

Official Website

Traumatic Brain Injury: from concussion to coma

Traumatic brain injury is headline news, whether it’s teen soccer players, NFL football players, or returning veterans from the war zones of Afghanistan. TBIs range from concussions to penetrating head injuries to life-threatening brain swelling and coma.

TBIs range from concussions to penetrating head injuries to life-threatening brain swelling and coma. And they have countless causes: war, sports, auto and motorcycle accidents, falls and physical violence. The aftereffects can be devastating, including compromised memory and concentration, loss of hearing, physical disabilities, depression, brain disorders, and in the worst cases, death.

Find about the different types of TBIs, what causes them and how they are diagnosed and treated. Along the way you’ll read about NHL player Derek Boogaard and U.S. Representative Gabby Giffords. Both sustained TBIs with dramatically different results. You’ll also meet teens and young adults living with TBIs and the doctors who treat them. And you’ll learn about amazing medical technologies that help victims recover and promise home for the future.

"A solid introduction to the topic. It makes good use of graphics, photographs and sidebars to deliver complicated information. An efficient survey of a timely topic." —Kirkus 2014

"The currency of this topic and its potential impact on teens make this a smart choice for school and public libraries." —Booklist 2014

Concise and well-researched exploration of mild to severe injuries of human brain. The well-organized, short chapters provide overviews of traumatic brain injuries caused by sports, motor-vehicle accidents, in the military, and more. A strong start for research: provides extensive bibliography and suggested readings, websites, and videos. ---- School Library Journal 2014

"Any educator that covers information about the brain, secondary or elementary or college level, needs to have this book as a reference in their classroom. It is well worth reading!" ----- National Science Teachers Association 2014


Leukemia: USA Today: Health Reports: Diseases and Disorders/Lerner Publishing



Hepatitis: USA Today: Health Reports: Diseases & Disorders

About one-third of Americans have hepatitis A now or have had it in the past. More than one million Americans have hepatitis B. And as many as 3.2 million Americans have hepatitis C. Hepatitis B and C are more contagious than HIV, yet few Americans know what theses viruses are or how to avoid getting them. This book fills you in on the ABCs (and beyond) of viral hepatitis.

Influenza: USA Today: Health Reports; Diseases and Disorders

Invisible Invaders: Dangerous Infectious Diseases

Selected by the National Science Teachers Association and the Children's Book Council as an Outstanding Science Trade Book for K-12.

What the critics say:

“With clear and clever headings, and brisk intelligent writing that never patronizes, this title is a thorough, understandable, and accessible source of current information and a trail to further research.” School Library Journal


“Clearly written succinct discussions of diseases neither hyping nor minimizing risks.” Booklist

“A comprehensive and up-to-date look at the major types of infections diseases.” National Science Teachers Association

Cutting-Edge Medicine from the Cool Science Series

Meningitis

What the critics say about "Meningitis"

"Eye-opening book makes a strong statement about the seriousness of meningitis. The book fulfills a need for accurate information. Easy to read and hard to put down."

National Science Teachers Association

Books

A soldier and military working dog rappel from a helicopter. (See the trailer for Dogs at War: https://vimeo.com/198760548

Dogs at War: Military Canine Heroes
Six legs. Four eyes. Two hearts. One team. A military working dog (MWD) and its handler live together, eat together, play together, sleep together, and risk their lives for each other every day while in a war zone. Experts say each military dog saves between one hundred fifty to two hundred soldiers during its working life by sniffing out concealed explosives and other weapons and by alerting its handler to hidden enemy soldiers.

Read interviews about how dogs are selected and trained. Learn how military working dogs find explosives and enemy soldiers in war zones. And read first-hand accounts from soldiers who have adopted their dogs.

School and Library Journal says: ". . . immediately captures attention by opening with detailed stories of two military working dogs," and "School libraries serving upper elementary and middle school students will want to consider this for purchase, as it not only is appealing but also offers a unique focus on a less covered aspect of the military."

Kirkus says, "As readers will learn in this admirable introduction to the military's K-9 corps, they thrive and suffer as much as the women and men who serve," and "deserves a wide readership beyond dog lovers and military buffs."

Booklist says, "Detailed, info-packed chapters look at the ideal temperament and breeds for combat, training practices, and the various jobs a dog can hold in the military," and "happy-ending stories of handlers adopting their retired dogs abound, and the loyalty and respect soldiers have for their canine partners is undeniable."

See the trailer for Dogs at War:
https://vimeo.com/198760548

Understanding Suicide: a National Epidemic
Learn the facts about suicide in every age group, including teens and members of the military.

Understanding Suicide: a National Epidemic
The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention says that 85% of us will lose someone we care about to suicide during our lifetime. Suicide is among the top three causes of death for young people ages 15 to 24. In fact, it's a global epidemic, claiming 41,000 lives per year in the United States alone.

Suicide touches people of all ages—from those who consider and attempt suicide to those who lose a loved to suicide. Yet silence often surrounds these deaths and makes the suicide phenomenon difficult to understand. What drives people to take their lives? How can suicides be prevented?

Quotes from outstanding YA novelists shed light on suicide among young people.

"When you read about someone being bullied and committing suicide . . . it’s someone’s most absolute cared-for person. Suicide is a permanent end to what could have most likely been avoided.” —author and youth advocate e.E. Charlton-Trujillo

“Depression isn’t like being sad or blue or wistful. It is crippling. It is a constant whine in your head, making it hard to hear yourself think. . . . In this state, you can only think of how desperately you want this agony to end. You can only think of doing something, anything, to stop the feeling, to keep it from overwhelming you with shame, loneliness, guilt, and bleak gray hopelessness. Depression is the absence of hope.” author Libba Bray, who lives with depression.

“I would tell survivors to grieve, and I would use my training to get that process started. I would tell them to curse and cry and shake their fists until they felt they didn’t need to do it anymore. I would highlight over and over that the suicide was not their fault, that suicide is a decision made by the person who commits it." Author/therapist Chris Crutcher

What the reviewers say about Understanding Suicide:

Kirkus: "Facts counteract stigma and ignorance in this guide . . . an array of important facts and figures, made intimate with personal stories of people who have attempted suicide or been affected by suicide. Frequent boxed inserts provide tangential material without distracting from the overall flow. The inclusion of quotes from several authors for teens is a welcome touch. An effective, compassionate guide to a subject that needs one."

School Library Journal: "Edifying and thorough, this title will prove useful for students doing research or those interested in learning about this tragic phenomenon."

Booklist: "quotes from people who have lost a loved one or who have survived an attempt themselves provide a powerful alternative [to images]. The text is careful to stay blame- and judgment-free, making it a particularly successful resource.


Bombs over Bikini named a Junior Library Guild Selection for 2014; winner of the SCBWI Crystal Kite Award for California/Hawaii; recommended by the National Science Teachers Association; rated as outstanding by the Association of Children's Librarians of Northern California; a Bank Street College Best Book
Visit www.bombsoverbikini.com.

“As soon as World War II ended, we located the one spot on Earth that hadn’t been touched by war and blew it to hell.” --Bob Hope, U.S. comedian and writer, 1946

In 1946, as part of the Cold War arms race, the U.S. military launched a program to test nuclear bombs in the Marshall Islands of the Pacific Ocean. From 1946 until 1958, the military detonated sixty-seven nuclear bombs over the region’s Bikini and Enewetak Atolls. The twelfth bomb, called Bravo, became the world’s first nuclear disaster. It sent a toxic cloud of radiation over Rongelap Atoll and other nearby inhabited islands.

The testing was intended to advance scientific knowledge about nuclear bombs and radiation. But it had much more far-reaching effects. Some of the islanders suffered burns, cancers, birth defects, and other medical tragedies as a result of radiation poisoning. Many of the Marshallese were resettled on other Pacific islands or the United States. They and their descendants cannot yet return to Bikini, which remains contaminated by radiation. And while the United States claims it is now safe to resettle Rongelap, only a few construction workers live there on a temporary basis.

For Bombs over Bikini, author Connie Goldsmith researched government documents, military film footage, and other primary source documents to tell the story of the world’s first nuclear disaster. You’ll meet the people who planned the test operations, the Marshall Islanders who lost their homes and suffered from radiation illnesses, and those who have worked to hold the U.S. government accountable for catastrophically poor planning. Was the new knowledge about nuclear bombs and radiation worth the cost in human suffering?

Learn about the harmful effects of some dietary supplements, especially weight loss and sports supplements, and some herbal products in my newest book, "Dietary Supplements: Harmless, Helpful, or Hurtful?"

See what the experts say about supplements:

"The supplement industry is a booming business. Their powerful advertisements can easily convince athletes that vitamin and mineral pills will enhance sports performance. Yet, there is little scientific evidence to support those claims." Nancy Clark, registered dietitian and member of the American College of Sports Medicine

"There are quick ways to lose weight, and there are safe ways to lose weight. However, there are no ways to lose weight that are both quick AND safe. Success in long-term weight loss requires patience, persistence, and hard work to improve food choices and exercise habits." Diana Wright, registered dietitian and nutrition educator

“I’m convinced that many of the supplements on the market today contain illegal products. Since the FDA does not regulate the supplement industry, there is no way of knowing how widespread the contamination really is.” Trevor Gillum, PhD, Exercise Physiologist, California Baptist University

"A lot of consumers have a preconceived notion that if it’s a natural product, it must be safe. But that is not necessarily the case. Most of these products are not well-regulated and have very little oversight. Traces of heavy metals and prescription drugs have even been found in some herbal and dietary supplements." Herbert Bonkovsky, MD, American College of Gastroenterology

School & Library Journal: ". . . well-written and solidly researched . . . " and, "The design is colorful and eye-catching, and Goldsmith makes the subject compelling."

Kirkus: "These tales provide graphic evidence of the issues presented by a wide-ranging group of products that are either untested or tested only infrequently," and, "Information is straightforward and accurate, presented on eye-catching, blue-bordered pages . . . " and, "Excellent, detailed end matter."

Booklist 2014: With deft, well-researched precision, Goldsmith explores the ethical implications of nuclear testing, which rendered portions of the Marshall Islands unsafe for generations. A stirring addition to any classroom discussion about the environment.

National Science Teachers Association 2014: This account of the destruction of Bikini, the careless contamination of living organisms, and the extermination of homes, the consequences of irradiation, the shameful disregard of human values by the military testing the devastating lethality of both A–bombs and H–bombs, is a topic that should provoke thoughtful reflection for Grades 6–12 readers.

School Library Journal 2014: The black-and-white period photos are an excellent accompaniment to the text. A well-written book about a painful piece of history, this is an excellent addition.

Association of Children's Librarians of Northern California 2014: Outstanding. Clear, lively narrative paired with historic black and white photos. An excellent resource on a little-known subject.



The Society of School Librarians International named "Battling Malaria" as best science book for grades 7 to 12 for 2011.


Battling Malaria: On the Front Lines Against a Global Killer
WHAT THE REVIEWERS ARE SAYING:

“I became engrossed in this book as soon as I picked it up. I found the chapter describing the history of the disease, "Malaria Through the Ages," particularly fascinating. Tracing the record of the disease from ancient Egypt through the observations of George Washington and an apparent outbreak described in Little House on the Prairie, the author covers both medical and public health aspects.”
National Science Teachers Association

"Every day, thousands of mothers watch helplessly as their children die from a disease that we have known how to prevent for decades. The continuing toll of malaria is a moral outrage."
--Melinda Gates (quoted on back cover)

"Battling Malaria is a fantastic overview of one of the world's deadliest killers! From the trained scientist who simply wants a review of this global disease to the high school student who is just beginning to understand the life-cycle complexities of a single-celled parasitic organism, readers will appreciate this very nice overview of the challenges that malaria poses for mankind." --Science Books & Films

"The book could easily be used as supplemental material for units on microbiology, parasitism, or biomedical advances. Its depth of content makes it suitable for reading, research, and as a source of material for debates. Additional resources included in the book are a malaria timeline and sources of information for students." -- National Science Teachers Association



Superbugs Strike Back: When Antibiotics Fail
For years, we thought we had infectious diseases licked. No longer were microscopic bacteria inflicting the death toll that plagued humankind prior to the discovery of antibiotics. But scientists never expected bacteria to fight back -- now we have to face the SUPERBUGS.

Selected Works

Read interviews about how dogs are selected and trained. Learn how military working dogs find explosives and enemy soldiers in war zones. And read first-hand accounts from soldiers who have adopted their dogs.
Malaria kills a child every 30 seconds. Learn about this deadly disease caused by parasites.
Many bacterial infections are becoming increasingly resistant to the antibiotics that once readily cured them.
teen nonfiction
Suicide is among the top three causes of death for young people ages 15 to 24. In fact, it is a global epidemic, claiming 41,000 lives per year in the United States alone. Suicide touches people of all ages—from those who consider and attempt suicide to those who lose a loved one to suicide. Yet silence often surrounds these deaths and makes the suicide phenomenon difficult to understand. What drives people to take their lives? How can suicides be prevented?