Selected Works

Science, Nature, Intermediate school readers
They live in the most extreme places on earth. How do they survive?
Memoirs and Biographies
An inspirational memoir of the highest ranking woman in the martial art of Kuk Sool Won. (teens and up)
Science, Medicine, Health
Learn the possible causes of autism and Asperger Syndrome, new treatments and diagnostic tools, and more in this insightful overview. (teens and up)
Science, Intermediate school readers
Pinguins puke (their chicks love it!), chameleons have a super tongue, alligators have good "feelings," a master of disguise, and how to catch a rainbow! Five fascinating animal secrets and how scientists uncovered them.
What is the secret of the sleepless whales?Join the scientists and their animal partners in a amazing adventure that will reveal the secrets of these amazing aquatic mammals! Find out... (middle-school and up)
It doesn't look cool and it doesn't feel pleasant, but it rules everything you do. The brain is the most intriguing and still mysterious organ in the body. Follow fellow classmate Mark through a regular day and see how his brain makes it possible for him to learn, feel pain, get stressed, and have fun. (middle school and up)
The fascinating life of the 19th Century British doctor who discovered the first safe vaccine against smallpox, the most deadly disease of his time.
Periodicals: Fiction
A short fictional story of a young girl who does not want to dive. Inspired in "The Iron Butterfly."
Periodicals: Nonfiction
The story of how 19th century Spanish orphans carried a life-saving vaccine in their bodies to America.
Periodicals: Nonfiction
“I found it cool that lion’s health can be determined by its looks.”
--Keegan, age 12

The Kids Who Fought Smallpox

Mariana Relós
Reprinted with permission of Highlights for Children

“Princess María Luisa has smallpox, the red death!”

In 1798 panic struck the palace where King Carlos IV of Spain lived with his family. The doctor didn’t have a medicine to cure the princess. Terrified, the king could only wait for the outcome of the disease.

Smallpox or, variola, was the most terrible disease of the time. It caused a deadly epidemic every ten to twenty years.

The disease was caused by a type of germ called a virus. Since most adults were survivors of past epidemics, their bodies had built defenses against it. As a result, the virus was caught mostly by children. They developed high fever, chills, nausea, aches, and itchy red spots over their bodies. Many of them died.

In the survivors, scabs formed and then fell off, leaving permanent pits and scars. Some survivors were left blind.

Princess María Luisa survived smallpox, and the King of Spain protected the rest of his family from the disease. He used a new method that was slowly becoming accepted.

This is the end of the excerpt from this award-winning article. To read the rest of the story check your Library for Highlights for Children of May 2000