USS CONSTELLATION by Walter Dean Myers

USS CONSTELLATION

Pride of the American Navy
Age Range: 10 - 12

KIRKUS REVIEW

The Constellation hasn’t received the press accorded the Constitution, “Old Ironsides,” but it was built at the same time (though broken up and rebuilt just prior to the Civil War), and also has a long, successful history in battle, as a hunter of slave ships, and as a training vessel. Supported by photos and documents (mostly, as is his wont, from his personal collection), Myers enhances his account of that history, not with the occasional sound-bite or factoid, but with the full text of a contemporary ballad, extended passages from memoirs, a rather sobering chapter from a crew handbook on the proper handling of munitions, and the like. He’s a bit hazy on nautical terminology (see contradictory info about masts, and he uses “fore and aft” as a technical term in the glossary without ever defining them); some of the illustrations are similarly indistinct; and a reproduced page from a modern comic book makes an uneasy fit. Still, this readable, well-deserved tribute to a recently restored national treasure, currently docked in Baltimore, will reach a wider audience than the locally published profiles currently available. (Nonfiction. 10-12)

Pub Date: June 15th, 2004
ISBN: 0-8234-1816-2
Page count: 86pp
Publisher: Holiday House
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1st, 2004




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