Each book in the series contains ten linked biographies of key pioneers, achievers and notable figures in different fields of endeavour. The life links between entries reveal surprising and often overlooked chains of influence, giving each biography a fresh and eye-opening twist.This title in the series includes ten riveting, in-depth biographies of pioneering explorers, including Christopher Columbus, James Cook and Roald Amundsen. Fast-paced text is enhanced by punchy, Manga-style artworks to create the look and feel of a graphic novel that will hook the most reluctant of readers. These are gripping stories, innovatively told."Marco Polo to Christopher Columbus" - Marco Polo's book, "The Travels of Marco Polo", was a direct inspiration to Columbus, whose library held an early printed edition of the book. It was full of handwritten notes made by Columbus, who believed that the lands of Cathay (China) and Japan that Polo described could be reached by sailing west rather than travelling overland to the east."Christopher Columbus to Ferdinand Magellan" - Both Columbus and Ferdinand Magellan failed to convince Portuguese rulers to sponsor their voyages.
Columbus was turned down by King John II; Magellan by his successor, King Manuel I. They both approached Portugal's great enemy, Spain, for financial backing instead, and both had to win the support of Bishop Fonseca, who authorized all expeditions to Spain's colonies."Ferdinand Magellan to Samuel de Champlain" - Just like Magellan before him, Samuel de Champlain was determined to find a route from the Atlantic Ocean west through the Americas to Asia. While Magellan was convinced that he could reach the Pacific via the rivers of South America, de Champlain believed that he could reach China by sailing down the rivers of Canada."Samuel de Champlain to James Cook" - Samuel de Champlain founded the Canadian settlement of Quebec on the St Lawrence river in 1608. One hundred and fifty years later, Quebec was besieged by British forces fighting the French. One of the sailors whose job was to provide accurate charts of the river for the British was James Cook. He was so successful that the British promoted him to captain and asked him to lead a voyage to the Pacific."James Cook to Alexander von Humboldt" - Georg Forster was a scientist on Cook's second voyage.
His report of the expedition was read by the teenaged Alexander von Humboldt, who was so inspired that he met Forster and travelled with him through Europe in 1790. Von Humboldt later paid tribute to Forster by dedicating his greatest work, Cosmos, to "Georg Forster, to whom I am indebted for the lively interest which prompted me to undertake distant travels.""Alexander von Humboldt to Lewis & Clark" - After exploring Latin America, Alexander von Humboldt travelled to North America in 1804 to visit the US President, Thomas Jefferson, who was a keen amateur scientist. The two men met a number of times and discussed the progress of the Lewis & Clark expedition, which had been organized by Jefferson and had set off six days before von Humboldt's arrival in the USA."Lewis & Clark to Richard Burton" - Unlike many earlier explorers who mistreated local peoples, Lewis & Clark relied on friendly relations for the success of their expedition. Their guides, including Cruzatte, Charbonneau and Sacagawea, also acted as interpreters in Lewis & Clark's dealings with native Americans.
Richard Burton shared a similarly progressive attitude - he could not have undertaken his expeditions without a mastery of local languages, which he used to gain advice and local knowledge from those who lived in the regions he explored."Richard Burton to Roald Amundsen" - Richard Burton's two greatest expeditions were sponsored by the Royal Geographical Society. One of the society's founders was the explorer Sir John Franklin, who disappeared in 1844 while searching for the fabled Northwest Passage. His exploits directly inspired Roald Amundsen to become an explorer. Amundsen succeeded where Franklin failed, and managed to sail through the Northwest Passage in 1903-06."Roald Amundsen to Jacques-Yves Cousteau" - Roald Amundsen's 'capture' of the South Pole led to a worldwide surge of interest in the continent of Antarctica. The same thing happened following the transmission of Jacques Cousteau's Antarctic documentary, Journey to the End of the World, in the 1970s. Cousteau returned to Antarctica in 1990 to publicize the signing of an extension to the 1961 Antarctic Treaty that protects the unspoilt continent from oil and coal exploitation.show more