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Leif Eriksson (Fact Finders Biographies: Great Explorers Series)

Overview

Describes the life, journey, and lasting impact upon world history of explorer Leif Eriksson.
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Overview

Describes the life, journey, and lasting impact upon world history of explorer Leif Eriksson.
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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
Writer Glaser tells the story of Scandinavia explorer Leif Eriksson who led a group of men to the shores of North America. Born about the year 980, he was the son of Erik the Red, a Viking leader who was always getting into trouble. Erik had a desire to explore and he left his home in Iceland sailing west. He returned home to tell his people about a new land he called Greenland. In 986 he moved his family to Greenland with about 400 other settlers. Leif grew up wanting to explore just like his father. When Greenland began to get crowded due to an increased population, Leif went off to find more land. He sailed until he came to North America, which he named Vinland because of the wild grapes growing there. He returned to Greenland with the intention of starting a colony in Vinland, but instead Leif became the leader of Greenland after his father became ill. Other Vikings left to form colonies in Vinland, but Leif stayed in Greenland, married and had several children. Viking colonies grew along the shores of Vinland until 1100, but eventually, the settlers of Vinland disappeared. Years later, the Greenland settlers were also gone. Either the settlers starved, died-off or left. The location of Vinland is still a mystery. Some old house foundations have been found at a site in Newfoundland, Canada, but it is still uncertain whether these were the homes of the Vinland settlers. Leif Eriksson is remembered as the first European to visit North America. Color illustrations, maps, fast facts, timeline, glossary, Internet sites and further reading are included in the book. This biography is part of the "Fact Finder" series published by Capstone Press. 2005, Capstone Press, Ages 8 to 12.
—Della A. Yannuzzi
School Library Journal
Gr 3-5-These books may be accurate, but they aren't exactly motivating. In short chapters, the authors give children a steady march through the explorers' journeys. Lots of the information is repeated in picture captions, the time line in the back, and the Fast Facts page. Simple maps and a few reproductions or modern photos help break up the monotony of the historical paintings and plodding narratives. The use of "Fact!" boxes makes readers wonder what the rest of the text is conveying and adds to the choppiness of the entire presentation. Going to the recommended Web sites provides deeper knowledge of the subject, but the reading levels there are much higher than in the books. Especially disheartening are the unattractive cover portraits in which not even Leif Eriksson appears exciting or dangerous.-Erlene Bishop Killeen, Fox Prairie Elementary School, Stoughton, WI Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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