ICE WRECK by Lucille Recht Penner


Road to Reading: Mile 4
by & illustrated by
Age Range: 6 - 9
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The amazing Antarctic survival story of Sir Ernest Shackleton and his crew is the basis for this transitional chapter book. Shackleton and his crew of 27 were attempting to cross the continent of Antarctica in 1914, when their ship, the Endurance, became stuck in the ice. They stayed with the ship for seven months, camped on ice floes for five months, and then rowed in small lifeboats to a distant island. Their saga continued as Shackleton and four of the men continued on to another island to get help for the rest of the crew, and all the crew members survived the 18-month ordeal. Penner does a serviceable job of summarizing a complex story in brief chapters, with short sentences that convey the information with a sense of excitement and inherent danger. A few black-and-white photographs from the actual expedition are included (without captions), supplemented with LaFleur’s coordinating illustrations in icy blues and lavenders. Several books for young readers on the Shackleton saga have been published in the last few years, including two well-received volumes by Jennifer Armstrong and an easy reader in Random House’s Step into Reading series (Monica Kulling’s Sea of Ice: The Wreck of the Endurance, 1999). Still, kids do love disaster books, and this story has all the drawing power of a disaster without the unhappy ending (except for the poor sled dogs). (Easy reader/nonfiction. 6-9)

Pub Date: July 1st, 2001
ISBN: 0-307-26408-4
Page count: 48pp
Publisher: Golden Books/Random
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15th, 2001


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