Reviews for Trailblazers : Poems of Exploration


Horn Book Guide Reviews 2007 Fall
The poetry in this purpose-driven yet entertaining (sometimes irreverently so) volume is ostensibly written in the voices of explorers and scientists. The works describe different places around the globe and urge readers to find their own ways of learning about the world. Biographical information about each explorer is included; an author's note provides some perspective on Western notions of "discovery." Bib., ind. Copyright 2007 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2008 Spring
The poetry in this purpose-driven yet entertaining (sometimes irreverently so) volume is ostensibly written in the voices of explorers and scientists. The works describe different places around the globe and urge readers to find their own ways of learning about the world. Biographical information about each explorer is included; an author's note provides some perspective on Western notions of "discovery." Bib., ind. Copyright 2008 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

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School Library Journal Reviews 2007 July

Gr 3-8-- Researching both primary and secondary sources, Katz has created a unique volume that explores the lives of more than 120 explorers, from ancient times to the present. Entries include Genghis Khan, whose commanders, Jebe and Subedi, tell the story in two voices of the conquering of Russia ("Our horses and our cavalry/will be our keys/to victory!"), and the Vikings ("…Vikings become/better workers/when they're roused/to be berserkers."). The book also introduces Egeria, a "remarkable nun" who kept a diary of her pilgrimage to Egypt and the Holy Land circa 390, and Hanno, who led an expedition of 60 ships in 530 B.C. to explore the west coast of Africa and "…to build new towns,/where Carthage then could trade." Space heroes, educators, and scientists are among the modern explorers. Katz challenges readers to consider not only the courage of these individuals, but also to broaden their horizons in terms of the definition of exploration and the motivations behind it. The entry for Mae Jemison reads, "…Now a scientist in outer space,/I've proved my parents true./"There's no one who you cannot be.'/"There's nothing you cannot do.'" All the selections encourage reading aloud, especially the poems for two voices. The few black-and-white illustrations scattered throughout are small and iconic. Although the book has limited visual appeal, the poems are creative and present a new perspective on an old subject. Teachers will find many cross-curricular connections.--Lee Bock, Glenbrook Elementary School, Pulaski, WI

[Page 117]. Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.

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