Another in the popular What the Neighbors Thought series, this title tells of daring, curious, hardy men (mostly) and women from different countries and eras who took bold risks in uncharted territories out of senses of adventure, curiosity and mission.
As a result of their courage, new maps and routes were developed; new animals, plants and merchandise were discovered—and the world changed irrevocably. Some subjects are well-known, others not so much. As with the series’ other offerings, kids will discover enticing bits about both unfamiliar explorers and those they thought they knew: Magellan was a nasty piece of work, Capt. Cook forced sauerkraut on his crew, and one of Lewis and Clark’s team mistook Lewis for an elk and shot him. The straightforward, accessible prose makes for fast reading, and Krull doesn’t shy away from some deplorable, stomach-turning facts, which kids will devour and use to spice up staid homework assignments. Some chapters end with an “Onward” feature that includes additional facts about the explorer. Hewitt’s colorful acrylic caricatures capture each adventurer’s spirit with specific details of attire, locale and, in many cases, mode of transport. Maps of many of the journeys are included; there’s no index.
Readers will enjoy delving into the exploits of intrepid explorers across time and, literally, space. (Collective biography. 9-12)