Two young apprentices in colonial New York get involved in the most controversial event of their daythe arrest and trial of printer Peter Zenger. In 1734, Gus is apprenticed to Zenger's old master, William Bradford, whose authority he begins to question when the old man decides not to print news of the trial. Urged on by his fiery friend Zach (a lawyer's apprentice), Gus undertakes a mission on Zenger's behalf that helps bring about the printer's acquittal. Sorel's many b&w illustrations provide comic relief and, in the case of Gus's paper-making lesson, information as well. The details of typesetting, ink-making, as well as other aspects of colonial life, are far more vivid than the characters, who are one- dimensional, and little more than the sum of their attitudes. But Krensky (The Iron Dragon Never Sleeps, 1994, etc.) makes good use of historical fact, his plot moves along smoothly, and the ideas and ideals are worth reading about; for many readers, this first meeting with Peter Zenger may not be their last. (Fiction. 8-10)

Pub Date: June 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-385-32095-7

Page Count: 103

Publisher: Delacorte

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 1995

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McDonald’s irrepressible third-grader (Judy Moody Gets Famous, 2001, etc.) takes a few false steps before hitting full stride. This time, not only has her genius little brother Stink submitted a competing entry in the Crazy Strips Band-Aid design contest, but in the wake of her science teacher’s heads-up about rainforest destruction and endangered animals, she sees every member of her family using rainforest products. It’s all more than enough to put her in a Mood, which gets her in trouble at home for letting Stink’s pet toad, Toady, go free, and at school for surreptitiously collecting all the pencils (made from rainforest cedar) in class. And to top it off, Stink’s Crazy Strips entry wins a prize, while she gets . . . a certificate. Chronicled amusingly in Reynolds’s frequent ink-and-tea drawings, Judy goes from pillar to post—but she justifies the pencil caper convincingly enough to spark a bottle drive that nets her and her classmates not only a hundred seedling trees for Costa Rica, but the coveted school Giraffe Award (given to those who stick their necks out), along with T-shirts and ice cream coupons. Judy’s growing corps of fans will crow “Rare!” right along with her. (Fiction. 8-10)

Pub Date: Aug. 1, 2002

ISBN: 0-7636-1446-7

Page Count: 160

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2002

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For shark fanciers, a look at a Los Angeles Natural History Museum exhibit, Sharks: Fact and Fantasy. Now touring the country, it includes models of large and small sharks, many of them swimming in simulated undersea settings. The text follows a group of young museum-goers as they examine shark teeth, fossil sharks, sharks in art, and a living shark embryo; shark anatomy, special adaptations, types of sharks, and some shark facts are also included. Photos are clear, colorful and engaging. Not comprehensive, but an attractive added purchase. Pronunciation guide; additional reading; index. (Nonfiction. 8-10)

Pub Date: Sept. 23, 1991

ISBN: 0-395-57560-5

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Clarion

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1991

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