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Children's LiteratureBy relating just one incident based on a true story in the life of John Muir, the authors make this early environmentalist come alive for young readers. Glaciers fascinated John Muir, and while on an expedition to Glacier Bay, Alaska, he was followed out on the glacier by a feisty little dog named Stickeen. Muir thought the dog was just a pampered pet, until he saw the dog's courage as Stickeen risked his life to follow Muir through a terrifying storm. The dark figures of man and dog stand out sharply against the dramatically massive icy blue-colored glacier and emphasize the frightening power of the natural world and the intense cold of this Alaskan wilderness. One double page spread is particularly effective in showing the vastness of the glacier. Tiny snapshot-like vignettes of man and dog, echoing details from the larger illustrations remind the reader of the contrast between man and nature. Generous white space forms a background for the simple straightforward text and the book would make a successful read aloud. While not actual diary entries, the snippets of parchment with journal-like notations, and the map and Tlingit drawings on the end papers give the book historical flavor. Children will enjoy this heart-warming dog story while receiving a valuable introduction to one of our most important early conservationists. Readers wanting to learn more about John Muir might try John Muir: American Naturalist by Thomas Locker, Fulcrum Publishing, May 2003. 2004, Northwood Press, Ages 6 to 9.