10 EXPLORERS WHO CHANGED THE WORLD by Clive Gifford

10 EXPLORERS WHO CHANGED THE WORLD

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Age Range: 10 - 12
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KIRKUS REVIEW

A grandiose title and melodramatic, superhero-style art fail to lift Gifford’s profiles of familiar explorers above the routine. Making only fitful efforts to support his titular premise, the author briefly retraces the routes of European explorers from Marco Polo and Columbus to Richard Burton and Jacques Cousteau, tucking in a chapter on Meriwether Lewis to represent the Americans and briefer sketches at the end of Zheng He and Mary Kingsley to add diversity. The prose reads like a series of uninspired school reports—“On his second voyage, Cook traveled further south than any explorer before him…Giant icebergs and severe storms tormented their journey”—and the author neither cites his sources nor provides leads to more information about his subjects. The steely-eyed, forward-leaning figures in Cousens’s illustrations supply some eye candy, but there’s nothing else here that any adequate library or encyclopedia won’t provide. The simultaneously published Ten Leaders Who Changed The World (ISBN: 978-0-7534-6104-4) is no better, though at least the cast of modern heroes (Gandhi, Mandela) and tyrants (Hitler, Mao Zedong) is more multicultural in scope. (Collective biography. 10-12)

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-7534-6103-7
Page count: 64pp
Publisher: Kingfisher
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15th, 2008




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