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Big Alaska: Journey Across America's Most Amazing State Hardcover – February 21, 2006

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 6 - 10 years
  • Grade Level: 1 - 5
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Walker Childrens (February 21, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0802780695
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802780690
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 0.4 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #428,665 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 2-8 Miller's text follows a bald eagle's flight across Alaska, beginning with Admiralty Island and circling back to the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve. The route reveals fishermen in a river, walruses basking in a sanctuary, the northern lights above the Iditarod Trail, whales, farmers, bears, and the site of the strongest North American earthquake, Katmai. Each spread is devoted to a new destination. Endpapers show an outline map with the locations visited clearly identified. Unfortunately, most of the Aleutian Islands are not depicted, leading some readers to think that they are seeing a complete map of the state. Zyle's acrylic paintings perfectly suit the grandeur of the subject. Some scenes are viewed from the eagle's perspective, over his wingspan; sometimes he is perched on rocks or branches. Back matter includes Alaska Facts, State Symbols, Climate Records, and Alaska's Special Places, which has additional information on the locations described in the text. These resources will be especially helpful for reports, but the book as a whole is a special treasure both for readers already interested in the subject and newcomers. An excellent addition to any collection. Amelia Jenkins, Juneau Public Library, AK
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Gr. 2-4. This large-format book introduces a variety of natural places in Alaska. A state map on the endpapers marks the 16 sites visited, including the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Glacier Bay National Park, the Yukon Kuskoquim Delta, the Iditarod Trail, and Prince William Sound. The journey begins on Admiralty Island, where a bald eagle lives. Throughout the book, readers follow the bird's flight, stopping on each double-page spread to study one site in a large-scale painting and read two or three paragraphs of information about it. The sweeping illustrations vividly portray the state's varied ecosystem, creating impressions of the landscapes and wildlife. Back matter includes a page of "Alaska Facts," lists of state symbols (state motto, fish, mineral) and climate records, and three pages of additional information and Internet sites related to the 16 places visited in the book. Carolyn Phelan
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Reading Mom on November 8, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am always happy to see a new collaboration from author Debbie S. Miller and Jon Van Zyle and this offering doesn't disappoint! This is a great book to use when introducing school age children to the great state of Alaska. With the help of a bald eagle we travel through 3,100 miles of Alaska covering all five regions--Southeast, Southcentral, Southwest, Interior, and Arctic. Each area highlighted receives one illustration and one page of text. The back of the book contains Alaska facts, State symbols, Climate records, and has additional information on all the Alaskan special places covered in the book's text. I would love to have seen the Fairbanks area as well as the farthest north community in North America, Barrow, also included, but Alaska IS a big state and perhaps those areas as well as others will be included in the next (I hope there will be a next!) book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The copy I received had a dedication to a girl written on the inside leaf and signed by the author - so my nephew thought that was a little weird when I gave it to him.
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More About the Author

Debbie S. Miller grew up in the San Francisco Bay area. She loved climbing trees, watching animals, and hiking in wild places such as Yosemite National Park. The natural world inspired her to write at a young age. After obtaining her teaching degree, Debbie moved to Alaska with her husband, Dennis. The call of the wild beckoned them from the freeways of California.

For the past 35 years, Debbie has loved exploring the wilds of Alaska and studying its great diversity of wildlife. Alaska has been the foundation and inspiration for all of her writing. Her first wilderness adventure book, Midnight Wilderness (Sierra Club Books, 1990) describes the wonders and natural history of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge based on 14 years of explorations. Many of her nature books for children, such as Survival at 40 Below (Walker, 2010) have been recognized as Outstanding Science Trade Books for Children by the National Science Teachers Association and Children's Book Council (NSTA/CBC).

Debbie enjoys speaking in schools across Alaska and America, sharing her books and programs with teachers and students of all ages. She also likes traveling to other wild regions of the world, such as Australia, where she recently studied some fascinating marsupials, reptiles, and birds.

Alaska will always be a home that Debbie cherishes along with her two grown, beautiful daughters who still enjoy hiking, fishing and camping with her.

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