HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: Exploring the Titanic: How the Greatest Ship Ever Lost—Was Found
Author: Robert D. Ballard
Illustrator: Ken Marschall
Publisher: Scholastic, reprinted in 1998
ISBN-13: 978-0600567035 Hardcover
ISBN-10: 0600567036 Hardcover
Language level: 2
(1=nothing objectionable; 2=common euphemisms and/or childish slang terms; 3=some cursing or profanity; 4=a lot of cursing or profanity; 5=obscenity and/or vulgarity)
Recommended reading level: Ages 8-9 and up
Rating: ***** 5 stars (EXCELLENT)
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
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Ballard, Robert D. Exploring the Titanic: How the Greatest Ship Ever Lost—Was Found (published in 1988 by Madison Press Books, a division of Madison Publishing Inc., 40 Madison Ave., Toronto, Ontario M5R 281, Canada; republished in 1998 by Scholastic Inc., 555 Broadway, New York City, NY 10012). Nearly everyone has heard of the Titanic, the “unsinkable” ocean liner that on its maiden voyage across the Atlantic Ocean from England to the United States in 1912 hit an iceberg and sank into nearly twelve and a half thousand feet of water (over two miles), with the loss of some 1,500 lives out of 2,223 passengers. For the next 73 years, the wreck lay unexplored until a French-American team led by author Robert D. Ballard discovered its location in 1985. This book tells the complete tragic and fascinating story of the sinking and discovery of the Titanic for middle grade readers and will be of interest to all youngsters who enjoy reading about the great ships of the past.
After an introductory Chapter 1, Chapters 2 and 3 relate about the building and sinking of the ship. Then Chapters 4 and 5 discuss its location in 1985 and its exploration in 1986. Ballard offers his conclusions in Chapter 6 and the Epilogue. The back of the book contains a glossary, a time line, and a bibliography for further reading. The clearly written and detailed text describing the famous disaster and its finding is accompanied by Ken Marschall’s stunning paintings and both period and current photographs, as well as numerous other excellent illustrations such as drawings, graphs, diagrams, and sketches. Ballard also wrote the bestselling The Discovery of the Titanic for teens and adults and Finding the Titanic, a Hello Reader! Level 4 book (1993) which I have previously reviewed, for beginning readers.