Author: Gavin Bishop
Illustrator: Gavin Bishop
Publisher: Gecko Press
Date of Publication: October 2018
Reviewer’s name: Kirsten Puddick
Reviewer’s Job title: Librarian
Reviewer’s School name: Holy Cross School, Miramar
How highly are you recommending this book? Highly recommended
This hardback book has a physical feel of quality. Its enticing matte dust cover leads to informative and beautifully presented end pages which introduce the types of passengers the HMS Endeavour carried. There is also plaque informing the reader of the purpose for the ships journey and a cross section of the ship and its contents.
This graphic non-fiction book’s tale is presented as a diary of the ship’s cook, one-handed John Thompson. John soon discovers that creative culinary thinking is required on board and recipes such as Seared Sharks Steaks and Goose Pie (made with gannets) appear throughout the book. Along with other culinary delights such as roast dog and albatross with pickle, we also learn about historical happenings such as the transit of Venus across the sun, and the dangers the crew faced and how few returned.
NZ Children’s Book Award winner Gavin Bishop illustrates this story with muted colours, giving them a historic feel. They are strong images, showing emotions and adventure.
This book tells many stories with subtle humour and surprising happenings. It is a wonderful adventure and I read it from cover to cover in one sitting. I would highly recommend this book to almost anyone.