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Ten-year-old Henry has just gotten the job of his life―assistant to Charles Darwin on a voyage of the HMS Beagle. He will help Darwin collect all the creatures that fly, scuttle, and leap on this expedition to faraway lands. Little does he know that it will be one of the greatest scientific expeditions of all time! As the trip gets under way, Henry records everything he sees and does in his diary, providing readers with a firsthand account of the famous adventure. Fictionally told but based on facts, Charles Darwin puts an innovative spin on the story and accomplishments of the most famous naturalist in history, just in time for Darwin's 200th birthday.
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Alan Gibbons is a full-time writer and lecturer and twice has been nominated for the Carnegie Medal. He lives in Liverpool, England with his wife and four children.
Leo Brown is a painter, illustrator, author, art director, sculptor, and animator. As a concept artist, his clients range from the BBC to Disney.From Booklist:
Most of the space in this large-format volume is devoted to an illustrated, imagined diary purportedly written during Charles Darwin’s famous voyage aboard the HMS Beagle. Based on historical accounts but written in the voice of a fictional cabin boy, the story comments on Darwin’s personality and pursuits along with matters such as practical jokes played on board. Large, brightly colored line-and-wash pictures appear throughout the diary section, along with smaller photos of period artifacts. Illustrated mainly with drawings and photos, the last third of the book offers straightforward discussions of topics such as the ship, the route of the voyage, life at sea, Darwin’s later life and work, and other notable nineteenth-century scientists. A glossary is appended. The book’s most striking feature is the thick front cover, which features an iridescent cut-out picture of a butterfly displayed beneath an embedded circle of hard, clear plastic. Recommended for larger collections. Grades 3-6. --Carolyn Phelan
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