The Aquitaine Reluctant Reader Series




Award Winner Looking at the Cat, an Eye on Evolution


The history of the cat goes back much further than the Egyptians, as the reader will find out when reading “Looking at the Cat, An Eye on Evolution”. The book is an overview of Darwin’s Theory of evolution as it relates to the cat. The student not only is exposed to the concepts of evolution but, at the same time, is shown examples of how evolution has progressed and the time frame during which these changes took place. The book contains 44 pictures, photos and graphs along with 10 sidebars.

      The book is written for students age 12-16 to satisfy Common Core and high school biology curriculum requirements. It is well documented with a source and illustrations credit lists. A list of further readings, with activities is included to amplify further the message that reading is fun.


Award Winner
Outdoor Writers Association of America (OWAA)
Excellence in Craft Award




The Coelacanth, the Greatest Fish Story Ever Told


The primitive-looking coelacanth (pronounced SEEL-uh-kanth) was thought to have gone extinct with the dinosaurs 65 million years ago. But its discovery in 1938 by a South African museum curator on a local fishing trawler fascinated the world and ignited a debate about how this bizarre lobe-finned fish fits into the evolution of land animals.

There are only two known species of coelacanths: one that lives near the Comoros Islands off the east coast of Africa, and one found in the waters off Sulawesi, Indonesia. Many scientists believe that the unique characteristics of the coelacanth represent an early step in the evolution of fish to terrestrial four-legged animals like amphibians.




Who Was Macho B and What We Know about Jaguars

Although jaguars are native to Arizona, little is known about the population segment that resides in Mexico and uses southern Arizona and New Mexico as the northern extent of its range. It was thought the species had been extirpated from the state until 1996 when the first jaguar documented since 1986 was photographed by a southern Arizona rancher/mountain lion hunter. After capture, collar and release, a web of intrigue surrounded death of the only jaguar in Arizona, Macho B.



Fire in the Trees

Find out how some fires in the forest can help trees. Given additional light, new trees can sprout from seeds and grow to be saplings. Believe it or not, some cones need fire to open and spill their seeds. Conifers are different from other trees, though. Would you like to work in the forest, among the trees? This book will tell you how you could be a forester.



The Making of the Grand Canyon


Grand Canyon attracts the attention of the world for many reasons, but perhaps its greatest significance lies in the geologic record that is so beautifully preserved and exposed here. The rocks at Grand Canyon are not inherently unique; similar rocks are found throughout the world. What is unique about the geologic record at Grand Canyon is the great variety of rocks present, the clarity with which they're exposed, and the complex geologic story they tell. This book tells the story of its marvels from beginning to now in words and pictures.


The Strong Women Series



A Girl Named Mary

The early life of the girl who would become the Mother of Jesus


A Girl Named Mary tells the story of Mary, the Mother of Jesus as a young girl. Though she has a much older sister, she’s raised as an only child. Her cousin, Rebekka, is her closet friend and confidant. Together they grow and learn how to maneuver in a culture that is steeped in tradition. One that looks backward instead of forward for solutions to problems. Mary cares about others, helps the sick and disadvantaged and is a voice, albeit a young voice, for women.

At twelve, Mary was betrothed to an older man who had sons her age. She resisted this arrangement strongly. She argued with her parents against the betrothal with every bit of logic and strength she had but found this tradition beyond her ability to fight. The marriage took place and she was rewarded by the birth of a beautiful baby boy, Jesus.



Eve, the First (Liberated) Woman


In this historical fiction story, the author weaves the modern Darwinian theory into the fabric of the biblical Genesis story of the (Garden) Valley of Eden which has its origins in the ancient Sumerian Gilgamesh epic and the Mesopotamian epic, Atrahasis.

The story takes the reader through an imaginative path from Adam and Eve’s life before the Valley of Eden, the mythical encounter in the Garden, the expelling from the Valley, their life outside the Valley raising their family and finally, the consummation of their lives.

Through the author’s proficient style of building depth in each character through their deeds, conversation and thought processes, the reader is skillfully drawn into the story; a modern day take on an old story of good and evil. (Rita Westphal)


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