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Bruce BarcottFew famous names have as much vagueness attached to their exploits…Marco Polo opened Asia to European trade, so we're told, but we generally don't know much else. Laurence Bergreen remedies that by bolstering Polo's reputation and arguing for his historical importance in a book as enthralling as a rollicking travel journal. Bergreen, who has written biographies of Louis Armstrong, James Agee and Irving Berlin, turned his attention to ancient explorers with Over the Edge of the World, which tracked Ferdinand Magellan's circumnavigation of the globe. I was a fan of that book, but Marco Polo far outshines it, and not surprisingly. Marco Polo, unlike Magellan, left his biographers a masterpiece of a memoir to work with.
—The New York Times