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Full Text Reviews:
Bulletin for the Center... - 02/01/2007 Daughter of the discoverer of the North Pole and his very determined wife, Marie Peary was born in a hut in the north of Greenland and spent her first year in the Arctic; she returned on trips when she was three, six (a voyage that involved an unplanned winter in the Arctic), and finally, for her last childhood journey north, at eight. Marie certainly had some experiences that were atypical for a girl of her background, and her travels provide an interesting window into her father’s exploration. The narrative bounces abruptly from event to event, though, and there’s little authorial questioning of or reflection on the accounts by Marie Peary and her mother, which are Kirkpatrick’s principal source material. Lavish use of photographs helps enliven the chronicle, though the captions don’t always match up to the information in the text; there’s no map of Marie’s own travels, unfortunately, but there’s one for her father’s travel, though it’s limited to only his polar journeys. While serious exploration fans will want to stick to classic Peary biographies, Marie is a sufficiently offbeat explorer to elicit youthful interest and offer a chance for some vicarious travel. An afterword describes the later life of Marie and the rest of the family; a bibliography, endnotes, and an index are appended. DS - Copyright 2007 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.
School Library Journal - 03/01/2007 Gr 4-8-Born north of the Arctic Circle in 1893, Marie Ahnighito Peary published her own version of her youth in 1934 (The Snowbaby's Own Story), on which this book is based. Kirkpatrick's engaging text captures the girl's adventurous spirit and the opportunities that her father's life as an explorer presented, as well as her love of the North and her Inuit friends. Numerous black-and-white photos show the child growing up and pictures from the admiral's quest. A photo of four-month-old Marie reaching for a sunbeam-her first experience of sunlight after the long Arctic night-is especially poignant. It's impossible not to contrast the more staid images of traditional portraits with the lively candid shots of her at a ship's helm or standing with her Inuit friends dressed in animal skins. Children will relate to nine-year-old Marie's letter urging her father to stay home rather than go exploring again. Notes divided into primary and secondary sources, a bibliography, and acknowledgments reveal Kirkpatrick's thoughtful scholarship and reliance on Peary's book. A terrific addition for most collections.-Janet S. Thompson, Chicago Public Library Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information. - Copyright 2007 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 04/15/2007 *Starred Review* When Marie Peary, daughter of the famous explorer, was six weeks old, her mother wrapped her in a caribou skin bag, furs, and an American flag. Young Marie had a childhood like no other. Called Snow Baby by the Inuit, who had never seen a blonde, blue-eyed child, she moved back and forth between the icy domains where her father kept camp as he continued his expeditions and the U.S., where her mother’s relatives led a genteel life. Kirkpatrick had great source material to work with: both Marie and her mother wrote their own books. But her own involving writing gets this right down to children’s level as she picks out the details that will appeal to them most: Christmas in arctic climes, a frightening shipwreck, Marie’s friendships with Inuit children. She wisely frames the youngster’s personal story against a larger one—the repeated struggles of her father to reach the North Pole. This has everything—adventure, longing for a parent, the juxtaposition of cultures—all wrapped up in an attractive package, studded with fabulous photographs. A solid bibliography and source notes for the quotes are appended. - Copyright 2007 Booklist.