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My Ocean Liner: Across the North Atlantic on the Great Ship Normandie Hardcover – December 1, 2000


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 44 pages
  • Publisher: Stemmer House Publishers; 1st edition (December 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0880451491
  • ISBN-13: 978-0880451499
  • Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 6.7 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,358,406 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Part travelogue, part nostalgic ramble through the heyday of great ocean liners, this story shoehorns a fair amount of information into a simple chapter book about a five-day trip across the Atlantic. It's April 1939, and nine-year-old Paul and his parents set off from Manhattan to France and England aboard the Normandie, the queen of the famous French Line. From the family's well-appointed cabin (the Deauville suite, complete with a baby grand piano) to the elegant dining room and the pampering by their steward and stewardess, readers will know that this is a voyage in grand style. Mandel (Say Hey!) inserts a mild mystery subplot involving a missing boyAthe hunt for whom allows Paul a chance to tour areas normally off-limits to passengers, such as the bridge and the engine room. While this device helps propel the story, it also points up its main flaw: nothing much happens. However, MacDonald's (Scarecrowell) carefully researched watercolors (at least one per spread) provide charming period window dressing, and the narrative offers an appealing glimpse of a bygone shipboard life. Ages 7-12. (Oct.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Review

"MacDonald's carefully researched watercolors provide charming period window dressing, and the narrative offers appealing glimpses of bygone shipboard life." -- Publishers Weekly, October 2000

"The real interest here is the ship herself and pampered life aboard her, from mammoth engine room to luxurious suites." -- The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, March 2001

"The real interest here is the ship herself and pampered life aboard her, from mammoth engine room to luxurious suites." -- The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, March 2001

"The text and illustrations turned out beautifully." -- John Maxtone-Graham

More About the Author

Peter Mandel (http://www.author-illustr-source.com/petermandel.html) is an adventure travel journalist and the author of ten children's books. Mandel's books have come out from Simon & Schuster, HarperCollins, Penguin, Scholastic, Henry Holt, and Hyperion, among others, and have been featured in USA Today, and on ABC's "The Home Show." His titles have been part of exhibits at the Museum of Natural History in New York, at the Smithsonian, and at the National Baseball Hall of Fame, and have been translated into Japanese, Chinese, German, Italian, Dutch, Swedish and Danish. Mandel's work is syndicated through Featurewell.com. He lives in Rhode Island with his wife, Kathy, and cats, Sam and Betty. Mandel grew up in Manhattan and graduated from Middlebury College and Brown University.

Mandel's newest picture books for kids include ZOO AH-CHOOOO from Holiday House, illustrated by Elwood Smith, and JACKHAMMER SAM from Macmillan/Roaring Brook, illustrated by David Catrow. "If a new Walt Whitman broke up sidewalks with a jackhammer," said The Chicago Tribune, "this is exactly what his 'Song of Myself' would be." "Like New York City itself," said Publishers Weekly, "Sam is wonderful and overwhelming, rattling and mesmerizing." BUN, ONION, BURGER was published by Simon & Schuster in 2010 and named a Summer 2010 Children's INDIE NEXT PICK by the American Booksellers Association.

His other recent kids' books include PLANES AT THE AIRPORT and BOATS ON THE RIVER, both from Scholastic. The Boston Globe calls them "a great way to introduce the idea of travel in simple terms." The Dallas Morning News lauds the books for "informing and calming very young travelers" and School Library Journal says that "spare phrases combined with bold graphic illustrations will entice busy toddlers" and that "a singsong text suitable for reading aloud makes these titles entertaining choices." Other positive reviews of PLANES AT THE AIRPORT and BOATS ON THE RIVER have appeared in Publishers Weekly and Booklist.

Another picture book, SAY HEY! A SONG OF WILLIE MAYS, came out from Hyperion Books for Children in March of 2001 and was named a Boston Globe "Quick Pick" for children, a Child magazine recommended title, a San Francisco Examiner "Bay City Best" and a featured book in USA Today's Sports Weekly. SAY HEY! is one of six titles selected for the newly published JUMP AT THE SUN TREASURY OF AFRICAN AMERICAN PICTURE BOOKS and is featured in the "Baseball as America" exhibit curated by the National Baseball Hall of Fame and currently at the Museum of Natural History in New York.

His chapter book for children is MY OCEAN LINER: ACROSS THE NORTH ATLANTIC ON THE GREAT SHIP NORMANDIE from Stemmer House, which Publishers Weekly called "a voyage in grand style" and which was featured on a special family sailing on Cunard's QE2. RED CAT, WHITE CAT, another children's book, came out in 1995 from Henry Holt & Co. and was an American Bookseller "Pick of the Lists," a Kirkus Reviews "Best of the Issue," and a Working Mother magazine recommended book. In 1991, HarperCollins published his humorous book, THE OFFICIAL CAT I.Q. TEST. His more recent books include THE CAT DICTIONARY (Penguin) and THE OFFICIAL DOG I.Q. TEST (Bonus Books).

A contributing author of the best-selling collection, CHICKEN SOUP FOR THE CAT & DOG LOVER'S SOUL, Mandel has published his articles and essays in Harper's, Reader's Digest, The Los Angeles Times, The International Herald Tribune, Budget Travel and The Chicago Tribune, and is a regular contributor to the travel sections of The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, and National Geographic 'Kids.' One of his Boston Globe articles won the 2005 Lowell Thomas gold award from the Society of American Travel Writers for adventure travel article of the year. Other articles, for The Washington Post and the Baltimore Sun, won Lowell Thomas Awards in 2003, 2006 and 2007. One of his essays is included in the new anthology of travel humor published by Travelers' Tales: "What Color is Your Jockstrap? Funny Men and Women Write from the Road."

Mandel has written about destinations abroad such as Bangkok, Florence, Glasgow, northern Hudson Bay, the African desert, Antarctica, and the southern tip of Chile and Argentina. He also writes about unusual adventures including kayaking in New York harbor, watching polar bears and penguins in the wild, trekking in the tropical jungle, hiking a suburban strip mall, suiting up as a theme park character, and seeing America by metered cab. He likes baseball, ocean liners, Chinese food, and checking out just about any place he hasn't been.


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A. J. Puerini on September 22, 2002
Format: Hardcover
After taking my first Caribbean cruise this past year, my interest in ocean liners peaked. In my "web surfing" I came across this striking book cover with the title "My Ocean Liner". After discovering it was a tale of a child's adventure on the Normandie, I thought it would be a perfect book for my 2 children.
We were not disappointed. My younger child was enthralled when I read it to her the first time. My older child has read and re-read the story many times and will read it on request to his younger sister! Both can't wait to take their first cruise. It seemed to have much more impact than our photographs.
The story is fun and exciting. The illustrations are amazing. I love the one of the massive engine room and also the huge colorful dining room. You get a clear feel for how amazing this enormous ship must have been. Ms. MacDonald must be an accomplished artist.
All in all, my children, wife and I give it a unanimous 5 Stars!!!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By thomemslie on January 18, 2001
Format: Hardcover
The best children's books always seem to have adventure at their core, and this charming illustrated story brings to life the wonder and excitement of a small boy who sails the Atlantic on a classic ocean liner. Both kids and parents alike will find themselves happily at sea aboard the Normandie--probably the most magnificent ship ever built--and absorbed in a nautical mystery that deepens as the ship braves wind, waves and storms and nears safe harbor along the coast of France. An extra bonus is the book's introduction to easy French words and seafarin' facts of all sorts. A must for those who like boats, and a good story too!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 15, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Not only does this children's book allow the reader's imagination to delve into a realistic journey aboard the incredible Normandie, but what children's book is complete without magnificent illustrationns! MacDonald's depictions of times aboard the ship are filled with color and life. My children are not yet able to read it on their own, but they love to turn the pages and look at the many beautifully done illustrations that could tell the story on their own. Don't pass this one up!
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Format: Hardcover
This book is just an appetizer. Written mainly for pre-adolescents, it is a great way to stimulate more in-depth interest in this elegant ocean liner. The sorts of details I was looking for just weren't there.
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