ABCs of logging

Any six-to-nine-year-old who goes for machines in a big way should definitely take a look at ``Logging Machines in the Forest'' (New York: Dodd, Mead. $10.95), by Janet Chiefari. The very cover announces that large machines will be seen in satisfying quantity. There are tractors, bulldozers, excavators, graders, various (tree) fellers, skidders, log loaders, logging trucks, cranes.

What Janet Chiefari's book does is describe in simple and clear detail how the logging business works, beginning with the preparation of the site to be logged, and ending with the basics of reforestation.

Even children younger than 6 will enjoy this book. The terminology is fairly precise, and a two-page glossary of terms is appended to book's end.

The only puzzling part is why the photographs alternate between color and black-and-white. The black-and-white photographs are also less clear than the color images -- the problem seems to be contrast. Ms. Chiefari could also have avoided words like ``prebunched.''

Still, ``Logging Machines in the Forest'' is a useful book. It is accurate and responsible in its depiction of how logging should be done.

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