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Reading fiction is much more than a novel way to pass the time. Avid readers of all ages can tell you that from personal experience, though they may have different explanations for their indulgences. But scientists have gone a step further than anecdotes, proving that a brain on fiction is a marvel indeed.


Brain scans have shown reading words such as “orange,” “coffee,” or “jasmine” stimulate not only the language processing areas of the brain, but the smell-processing areas, as well. Words that evoke texture such as “rough” or “scaly” stimulate parts of the brain that process texture through touch. Action words stimulate the parts of the brain that coordinate body movements. And the same areas used to navigate interactions with others in real life are used when interacting with fictional characters in a novel. (Read more here.)



Rourke has published high-quality nonfiction children’s books for more than three decades. Recognizing the unique benefits that fiction provides students, the company has expanded its operations in recent years. The mission: producing informational fiction––a marriage of fiction and nonfiction––in keeping Rourke’s educational focus. Stories with fascinating factual details woven naturally into the plots and back matter that delves deeper into particular topics are standard features in most of Rourke’s chapter books and middle-grade novels.


Books in Rourke’s fiction series are self-contained and non-sequential, so they can be read in any order. And with topics ranging from alien athletes and world adventurers to ghost-hunting cheerleaders and time-traveling historical figures, there’s something for everyone!

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