Who Really Discovered America?
A “Meet the Players” page in this unusual title introduces the ancient Siberians, Christopher Columbus, and Leif Eriksson, and asks, “Who really discovered America?”—a question that structures the interesting material provided in the rest of the book. Details on the contenders feature an immediacy that will draw readers in (“The tribe’s people know they won’t survive if they stay in the mountains…Mothers wrap their babies and lift them onto their backs”). Full-page black-and-white and color illustrations, “Race Fact” sidebars “[Columbus’s sailors] ate a stew of salted fish and biscuits crawling with maggots”), and boxed glossary terms complement the vivid narrative. The closing chapter crowns a winner—the ancient Siberians—and explains how they did it, and why Columbus has traditionally been credited with their achievement. A large map shows the route that experts believe the Siberians took, and a closing time line telescopes the years between 25,000 BC and AD 1493, depicting the relevant activities of the three players at once. Children will be intrigued by this title and will appreciate the print and online further reading resource lists that will enable them to explore this historical mystery in more depth.
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