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8 Books about Diseases You Didn’t Know You Wanted to Read

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I can’t ever get enough of plagues. From Camus to THE HOT ZONE, I’m fascinated. There’s something compelling about watching mankind cope with disaster. The bravery of those who stand up to diseases and the tenacity of those who discover cures is inspiring.

It may be surprising, but kids are also fascinated by diseases. Whether they’re interested in history or science, these titles bring just enough macabre factor to allow for some genuine learning.

Fever 1793 Cover Image
$8.99
ISBN: 9780689848919
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Aladdin Paperbacks - March 1st, 2002

This is a fictional account of one girl living through the outbreak of yellow fever in eighteenth century Philadelphia and her attempt to escape and survive. Gripping and filled with historical details, this book comes from award winning author Laurie Halse Anderson.


American Plague: The True and Terrifying Story of the Yellow Fever Epidemic of 1793 Cover Image
$21.99
ISBN: 9780395776087
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Clarion Books - March 20th, 2003

If you loved FEVER 1793, then this Newberry Honor Award book might be your next pick. A nonfiction title, it thoroughly examines the 1793 yellow fever outbreak. Filled with generous archival images and illustrations, this title fascinates young readers.


The Boy Who Saved Cleveland Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9781627790697
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: St. Martins Press-3pl - April 1st, 2006

Another fiction title, this book tells the true story of a boy living in late eighteenth century Cleveland during a malaria outbreak and his heroic determination to help save lives.


You Wouldn't Want to Meet Typhoid Mary! Cover Image
By Jacqueline Morley, David Antram (Illustrator), David Salariya (Created by)
$10.95
ISBN: 9780531230411
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Franklin Watts - January 1st, 2013

Filled with fun facts and a heavy dose of humor, this book explores one woman’s single-handed spread of disease.


The Great Serum Race: Blazing the Iditarod Trail Cover Image
$9.99
ISBN: 9780802777232
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Walker & Company - March 1st, 2006

It’s easy to forget that Balto, our hero dog with the statue in Central Park, is famous only because of a diphtheria outbreak in Gnome, Alaska. Read all about the disease and one dog’s race to save the residents.


Red Madness: How a Medical Mystery Changed What We Eat Cover Image
$17.95
ISBN: 9781590787328
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Calkins Creek Books - April 1st, 2014

Learn about the mysterious disease we now know as pellagra with historic photos and documents in this examination of an outbreak that hit America’s South over 100 years ago.


Bubonic Panic: When Plague Invaded America Cover Image
$18.95
ISBN: 9781620917381
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Calkins Creek Books - May 10th, 2016

This book tells the true story of America’s first plague panic, when a San Francisco man died of bubonic plague. Follow along with the real heroes who fought the disease and live “the panic”.


It's Catching: The Infectious World of Germs and Microbes Cover Image
By Jennifer Gardy, Josh Holinaty (Illustrator)
$13.95
ISBN: 9781771470537
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Owlkids - April 15th, 2014

If you don’t have a favorite disease, this title runs through everything from the common cold to the ebola virus. A non-fiction title explaining the science behind the diseases that shape our lives, this book is great for young scientists and inquiring minds.