“Sailing the Unknown” review by School Library Journal

The Creative Editions-Mankato, MN. USA 2012

“This spare, fictionalized diary from the youngest crew member aboard the Endeavour in 1768 recounts the events and adventures experienced by the sailors under the command of Captain James Cook, famed for landing in Australia. Nicholas Young, 11 years old at the outset of the journey, is in charge of the ship’s milk goat and helps out in other ways when he can. He chronicles the nearly three-year expedition in journal entries that sway with the rhythm of a sailing ship, telling of the sights and sounds of the far-flung locations they encounter, from exotic animals and insects to groups of people so vastly different from himself. The drudgery of life aboard a ship is juxtaposed with the small moments of brightness and levity that crop up in the most unexpected places. Folk-art-style paintings continue the sea theme with the blues, grays, and greens of the ocean, adroitly conveying the vastness of the world they are exploring. Small border doodles highlight the humorous, or lighter times, such as the dunkings for those new to crossing the Equator. The artwork contains quite a bit of detail, and there is much for readers to pore over; Nick, in his Waldo-like striped shirt is a fun seek and find. A great introduction to exploration for young adventurers everywhere”.

Jody Kopple, Shady Hill School, Cambridge, MA
School Library Journal