Reviewer Conny Withay:Operating her own business in office management since 1991, Conny is an avid reader, volunteers reading the Bible to the elderly, and makes handmade jewelry. A cum laude graduate with a degree in art living in the Pacific Northwest, she is married with two sons, two daughter-in-laws, and one granddaughter.
Deutsch and Rhody Cohon
Illustrator: David Wenzel
Publisher: Aladdin Paperbacks
“Can you imagine a world without maps?” Mr. Caruthers asks his third grade class while they are on a field trip in the nearby woods in Sacagawea's Strength (Blast to the Past) , a children’s book written by Stacia Deutsch and Rhody Cohon.
With one hundred and twenty-four pages, this paperback book is targeted toward ages seven to ten years old, has no profanity and no questionable or scary scenes. Illustrator David Wenzel paints a colorful scene of Sacagawea in a canoe with four children on the front cover. The back cover has two paragraphs about the book along with a drawing of the famous Native American and mentions the four prior books in the series. Inside there are ten black and white drawings along with a replica of Clark’s map of 1810 and coin photograph. Also included at the end of the book is an explanation by the authors of fact verses fiction about mapping the Lewis and Clark Trail with Sacagawea’s help along with the first two pages of the next book in the series.
The main object of this series is to ask young children what if a person in the past did not create, state, make or invent something that changed our lives today but quit instead. This book hones in on the life of Sacagawea from being kidnapped as a child to assisting Lewis and Clark in mapping America’s West.
In this fifth series of children time-traveling with their third grade teacher’s machine to change the mind of a famous person, Abigail and her three friends are bored mapping the forest near the school when Mr. Caruthers sends them to the year 1805 when Sacagawea helped William Clark and Meriwether Lewis crossing the Bitterroot Range in the Rocky Mountains in Montana. Married because she was sold to a trapper and having a two month old baby, the Native American woman along the Corps of Discovery trade with a tribe of Shoshone Indians whose chief happens to be her long-lost brother. Sacagawea decides to leave the expedition and go with her brother to hunt buffalo but the children must convince her otherwise. They transport her to current day South Dakota to learn about the USGS EROS Data Center and how advanced it is in making maps. Only then does the Shoshone dream of seeing the Pacific Ocean and rejoins Lewis and Clark to complete her task.
With the introduction of snarly Babs Magee who apparently stole Mr. Caruthers’s first time travel machine and is causing everyone to quit along with magic stones that help in language translation, the story gets a little sidetracked. Nonetheless, the reader learns about cartography, topography, radars and satellites along with the old mapping format, Native American culture and how this famous woman got on our gold dollar coins.
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