The author of several notable works of nonfiction (Commodore Perry in the Land of the Shogun, Newbery Honor, 1985) introduces a famous explorer, detailing his three voyages, placing his discoveries in their 18th-century setting, and noting their significance. Blumberg's concluding summation of Cook's achievements includes an assessment of their future positive and negative effects. In a book distinguished for its balance and attention to detail, Blumberg is especially conscientious in respecting the customs and point of view of the Pacific peoples, using telling specifics to enliven her story. While her meticulous use of sources and refusal to speculate result in a certain lack of animation in Captain Cook himself, the sheer excitement of the adventures compensates for the elusive nature of their hero. To include 70 b&w prints (not seen); chapter notes; index.