Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Christopher Columbus: Famous Explorer

Christopher Columbus: Famous Explorer

Mary Dodson Wade
Illustrator:  Rod Whigham , Charles Barnett III 
Nonfiction Graphic Novel  Series
For ages 7 to 9
Capstone Press, 2007   ISBN: 978-0736868532

Christopher Columbus was the son of a weaver who lived in Genoa, Italy, in the mid 1400’s. Columbus did not want to follow in his father’s footsteps. More than anything he wanted to be a sailor and explorer, and when he was fourteen his dream finally came true when he was able to get a job as a ship’s boy.

Over the years Columbus learned everything he could about sailing and ships and in 1477 he began talking about the possibility of sailing west to get to Asia. A few years later he was given some valuable maps and he determined that he would try to get to the Orient by sailing west instead of east. He was going to need a powerful backer however, and in the end he went to Spain where he got the help of King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella. The king and queen gave Columbus three ships and in August of 1492 the Nina, the Pinta, and the Santa Maria set sail.

On October 12th, 1492, the three ships hit landfall and history was made. For Spain it was a great moment and for Columbus is was a great victory, but it was one which did not last long. Settlements in the new colonies did not prosper and little gold was found. Despite his initial success Columbus died a lonely and forgotten man.

This carefully crafted non-fiction title which is presented in a graphic novel style format will give readers an excellent picture of what Christopher Columbus’ life was like. The graphic rich format makes the content accessible to even the most reluctant of readers.