Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite
History's Mysteries: Ship of Dreams is an educational adventure story for children, grades 4-6, written by Donna L Martin and illustrated by Estella Hickman and Donna L. Martin. Margaret wasn’t really all that intrigued by the journal Aunt Alberta gave her for her 10th birthday. She wondered what thoughts she could have that were worth memorializing in a journal? Even as she pondered that, she wrote down her wonderment and awe at the concept of the Titanic, the newest of the White Star Line’s ships. This one was supposed to be the ultimate and had been scheduled to depart on her birthday. For some reason, it hadn’t. Her father assured her that there was nothing wrong with the ship. The Titanic would be sailing by April, and her dad would be sure to give her every possible opportunity to be present while preparations were underway for the launch.
Donna L Martin’s History's Mysteries: Ship of Dreams offers young readers a chance to connect with the era and the enthusiasm that accompanied the maiden voyage of the unsinkable ship, the Titanic. I loved getting the chance to experience the excitement through Margaret’s eyes and especially appreciated how her dad made efforts to ensure that his daughter spent as much time as possible down at the wharf where the ship was to be launched. Martin’s plot is fresh and compelling and the pen and ink sketches that accompany the text are delightful. The tragedy of the Titanic is shared in an empathetic manner, with the loss of life made real by the loss of friends Margaret had made before the sailing, including Sasha, Luigi, and Mr. Andrews. History's Mysteries: Ship of Dreams makes history come alive and brilliantly. It’s most highly recommended.