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Leif Eriksson: Norwegian Explorer

Leif Eriksson: Norwegian Explorer

by Cynthia Fitterer Klingel, Robert B. Noyed (Joint Author)

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
One of the "Spirit of America: Our People" series, this 32-page book at a 4 to 5 grade reading level fits into social studies curriculum. While not omitting the fierce elements of their culture, it presents the Vikings as a multifaceted people. Their story as farmers, sailors, artisans, and explorers is woven into a narrative that focuses on Leif and father Erik the Red. The many illustrations vary from a photograph of the remains of the family's Greenland home to a 1688 print of Erik. Included are a "For Further Information" page, an index that could serve as a teaching tool, and a time line that begins with 2000 B.C. when early Vikings settled Scandinavia. Of little value are a brief glossary with eight seemingly randomly-selected terms and tinted pages placed after chapters to both reiterate and provide new information. The latter are more confusing than useful; for example, Erik's life is described in chapter one and then again on a tinted page after chapter two. Incorporating the information into the text and using the page to suggest activities or thought-provoking questions would be more helpful to teachers. Other concerns are questionable language and lack of documentation. For example, a sidebar says, "Leif Eriksson's mother built the first church in Greenland." Did she did plan or manage? Or haul the stones? King Olaf of Norway is directly quoted telling Leif to spread Christianity�undocumented information probably derived from a saga. Sources are not provided. 2003, Child's World,
— Mary Bowman-Kruhm
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 3-5-This concise biography of Eriksson and history of Viking exploration and discovery presents the most popular current version of events. The authors minimize the role of Vikings as berserkers, emphasizing instead their settlements, civic organization, and family life. Enough background is provided to place the events in world history. The writing is clear, although there is some fictionalizing of emotions and thoughts, which adds a touch of color to the story. Full-page inserts between chapters highlight specific information, such as "Erik the Red" and "Scandinavian Names." The color illustrations include archival art and photos of the beautiful landscape, artifacts, and archaeological remains. Readers wishing to follow up on the settlements will enjoy Matti A. Pitk nen and Reijo Harkonen's The Grandchildren of the Vikings (Carolrhoda, 1995). This new book will be heavily used by report writers and enjoyed by nonfiction readers.-Marlene Gawron, Orange County Library, Orlando, FL Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

Child's World, Incorporated, The
Publication date:
Spirit of America: Our People Series
Product dimensions:
7.52(w) x 9.92(h) x 0.34(d)
Age Range:
8 - 13 Years

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