The Adventurous Life of Myles Standish and the Amazing-but-True Survival Story of Plymouth Colony

Overview

Say hello to Myles Standish, a fiery man with short legs and an even shorter temper. When he got mad his face turned as red as his hair, earning him the nickname "Captaine Shrimpe."

It's a story that has been told for almost 400 years—how a brave band of people set sail on the Mayflower to find a new life in America.

By weaving her chatty, narrative text with her incredibly detailed artwork, award-winning ...

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Overview

Say hello to Myles Standish, a fiery man with short legs and an even shorter temper. When he got mad his face turned as red as his hair, earning him the nickname "Captaine Shrimpe."

It's a story that has been told for almost 400 years—how a brave band of people set sail on the Mayflower to find a new life in America.

By weaving her chatty, narrative text with her incredibly detailed artwork, award-winning author-illustrator Cheryl Harness makes readers feel as though they are part of the adventure.

Students will discover all sorts of things they never knew before: that a teenage boy almost blew up the Mayflower and that the first Indian the Pilgrims met greeted them in English! They'll learn more serious things, too: all about why they came, the hardships they suffered, the people they met, and the successes they achieved.

Middle-graders will experience one of history's great adventures as only Cheryl Harness can tell it.

National Geographic supports K-12 educators with ELA Common Core Resources.
Visit www.natgeoed.org/commoncore for more information. 

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Beverley Fahey
If you think you know everything about the Mayflower, pilgrims, Myles Standish, and the hardships faced by the early settlers, Harness's book will be an eye-opener. The life of Myles Standish, the redhead with the fiery temper and nicknamed Captaine Shrimpe, is seamlessly integrated into the story of the colonists' voyage, their arrival, and their settlement of the colony at Plimoth. The lively, chatty narrative reads like an adventure story that has turned historical icons into flesh and blood—God-fearing people with hopes and dreams and a healthy dose of fear and doubt. Incredible research has turned up fascinating information, such as the fact that the natives greeted the settlers in English, that captain John Smith wanted to sail with the pilgrims but was not invited, that the Mayflower was almost blown up by a young boy, and that Standish was made Captain General of the small pilgrim army, a post he held for forty years. The conversational tone of the book with its expressions in modern vernacular makes for easy reading, while always displaying the utmost respect for its subjects. Painstakingly detailed pen-and-ink drawings richly evoke the era. A time line running along the bottom of the pages puts world events of the time into perspective. A full index and bibliography complete this excellent example of nonfiction at its best.
VOYA - Rachel Wadham
Offering a refreshing counterpoint to dry, stodgy histories are two works from a planned series of eight. Outlining the journeys of two early adventurers, Narcissa Whitman and Myles Standish, Harness offers middle grade readers a distinctive view of historical events. The Tragic Tale of Narcissa Whitman chronicles the life of a young lady who had dreams of bringing religion to nonbelievers in far-off places. Her dreams came true when she married Marcus Whitman and they both headed west along the legendary Oregon Trail. Narcissa was the first white woman to make this perilous journey, and her story is one of dedication and courage. Excerpts from Narcissa's journals add flavor to her story, which ends quite tragically. The Adventurous Life of Myles Standish tells the familiar history of the pilgrims who came to America fleeing their religious persecutions in England. Focused on Myles Standish, the colonies' military advisor, the text covers the immigrants' travels and first hard years until the time of Myles's death in 1656. Focusing on one person and then placing that person in his or her historical context makes these works a wonderfully unique combination of biography and history. The extensive, illustrated time line that runs along the bottom of each page, while not always synchronized with the text, also adds interesting historical context. The works are well researched, and the presentation of controversial and overtly political topics is well balanced. The text is lively and interesting, with only occasional flaws such as the tendency to inconsistently define difficult words and frequent references to things that will be discussed later on. Drawings and maps stylizedto represent old woodcut pictures set off the text, but they are often so small, or as in the case of the maps especially, so overcrowded that they are of little use. A good bibliography and index complete these volumes that will find wide use in both public and school library collections.
School Library Journal
Gr 5-8-Harness combines a breezy tone with exhaustively researched texts to produce not only exemplary life stories, but also snapshots of the periods. As the author makes amply clear, Standish was a hotheaded but effective secretary of defense for the struggling Plymouth Colony. His willingness to make a show of force and to invest both time and effort (his own and others') into constructing fortresses probably saved the fledgling colony from untimely destruction. The steps Whitman took to become a missionary, her historic journey to Oregon country, her years at the Waiilatpu Mission, and her tragic death at age 39 are all covered. The narrative is much enhanced by the frequent use of excerpts from her letters home. In each book, a running time line lists significant events taking place in Europe, Africa, and Asia. The texts incorporate information on the state of technology and how that impacted the journeys each individual made, the force and impact of religious beliefs and worldviews, and significant societal beliefs and mores. Black-and-white line illustrations extend the texts beautifully, as do the maps. The bibliographies and indexes are excellent. While readers may not pick these titles up on their own, Harness's style (though a bit arch in tone at times) will hold their interest. Much preferable to most standard series titles, such as Louis Sabin's Narcissa Whitman: Brave Pioneer (Troll, 1997), these books have a place in most school collections.-Ann Welton, Helen B. Stafford Elementary, Tacoma, WA Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.
From the Publisher
"Harness combines a breezy tone with exhaustively researched texts to produce not only exemplary life stories, but also snapshots of the periods."—School Library Journal (Joint Review of Myles Standish and Narcissa Whitman)

From the Trade Paperback edition.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780792259183
  • Publisher: National Geographic Society
  • Publication date: 10/10/2006
  • Series: Cheryl Harness Histories Series
  • Pages: 144
  • Sales rank: 1,194,126
  • Age range: 10 - 14 Years
  • Product dimensions: 7.63 (w) x 9.35 (h) x 0.63 (d)

Meet the Author

Cheryl Harness is the author and/or illustrator of some 35 books for children. Visit this award-winning author-illustrator on the Web at www.cherylharness.com.
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