“Grandma” Gatewood is finally getting her due. Just this summer, the New York Times gave a long overdue obituary of Emma Gatewood, the first woman to hike the Appalachian Trail by herself in one season (at the ripe old age of 67). Gatewood was a mother of 11, a grandmother, and great-grandmother when she first hiked the trail. By the time she died 16 years after her first hike in 1973, she had completed the AT three times — setting the record as the first person to ever complete the trail more than once. Her story has also, finally, made it’s way to a children’s book this year, one whose clear, sparkling prose and beautiful illustrations by Jennifer Thermes give this real-life tale the inspirational platform it deserves.
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{"id":768647692337,"title":"Explorer Academy","handle":"explorer-academy","truncated_description":"\u003cp\u003eAdventure, danger, and a thrilling global mission await 12-year-old Cruz Coronado as he joins an elite school for explorers.\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003eCruz leaves his tranquil home in Hawaii to join 23 talented kids from around the globe to train at the Explorer Academy with the world's leading scientists to become the next generation of great explorers. But for Cruz, there's more at stake. No sooner has he arrived at the Academy than he discovers that his family has a mysterious past with the organization that could jeopardize his future. In the midst of codebreaking and cool classes, new friends and augmented reality expeditions, Cruz must tackle the biggest question of all: Who is out to get him, and why? \u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003eReaders can get in on the excitement with puzzles and codes embedded throughout.\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"This series opener from a new imprint of National Geographic is a fully packed high-tech adventure that offers both cool, educational facts about the planet and a diverse cast of fun characters.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Kirkus\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"This exciting series opener introduces young readers to the joys of science and nature.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Publisher's Weekly\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Sure to appeal to kids who love code cracking and mysteries with cutting-edge technology.\"  \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Booklist\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"A fun, exciting, and action-packed ride that kids will love.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-J.J. Abrams, director and screenwriter of \"Star Wars: The Force Awakens,\" \"Lost,\" \"Alias\"\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Inspires the next generation of curious kids to go out into our world and discover something unexpected.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-James Cameron, National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence and acclaimed film-maker\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Explorer Academy is sure to awaken readers' inner adventurer and curiosity about the world around them. But you don't have to take my word for it, check out Cruz, Emmett, Sailor, and Lani's adventures for yourself!\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-LeVar Burton, host of \"Reading Rainbow\" and \"LeVar Burton Reads\"\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Absolutely Brilliant! Explorer Academy is a fabulous feast for the mind and heart -- a thrilling, inspiring journey with compelling characters, wonderous places, and the highest possible stakes. Just as there's only one planet Earth, there's only one series like this. Don't wait another instant to enjoy this phenomenal adventure!\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-T.A. Barron, author of the Merlin Saga\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"In the midst of fast-paced action, Explorer Academy captures the power of learning through exploration. The excitement of hands-on discovery is modeled in Cruz's adventures, which encourages kids to take on the mind-set of explorers.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Daniel Raven-Ellison, National Geographic Explorer and Guerilla Geographer\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e","description":"Adventure, danger, and a thrilling global mission await 12-year-old Cruz Coronado as he joins an elite school for explorers.\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003eCruz leaves his tranquil home in Hawaii to join 23 talented kids from around the globe to train at the Explorer Academy with the world's leading scientists to become the next generation of great explorers. But for Cruz, there's more at stake. No sooner has he arrived at the Academy than he discovers that his family has a mysterious past with the organization that could jeopardize his future. In the midst of codebreaking and cool classes, new friends and augmented reality expeditions, Cruz must tackle the biggest question of all: Who is out to get him, and why? \u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003eReaders can get in on the excitement with puzzles and codes embedded throughout.\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"This series opener from a new imprint of National Geographic is a fully packed high-tech adventure that offers both cool, educational facts about the planet and a diverse cast of fun characters.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Kirkus\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"This exciting series opener introduces young readers to the joys of science and nature.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Publisher's Weekly\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Sure to appeal to kids who love code cracking and mysteries with cutting-edge technology.\"  \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Booklist\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"A fun, exciting, and action-packed ride that kids will love.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-J.J. Abrams, director and screenwriter of \"Star Wars: The Force Awakens,\" \"Lost,\" \"Alias\"\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Inspires the next generation of curious kids to go out into our world and discover something unexpected.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-James Cameron, National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence and acclaimed film-maker\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Explorer Academy is sure to awaken readers' inner adventurer and curiosity about the world around them. But you don't have to take my word for it, check out Cruz, Emmett, Sailor, and Lani's adventures for yourself!\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-LeVar Burton, host of \"Reading Rainbow\" and \"LeVar Burton Reads\"\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Absolutely Brilliant! Explorer Academy is a fabulous feast for the mind and heart -- a thrilling, inspiring journey with compelling characters, wonderous places, and the highest possible stakes. Just as there's only one planet Earth, there's only one series like this. Don't wait another instant to enjoy this phenomenal adventure!\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-T.A. Barron, author of the Merlin Saga\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"In the midst of fast-paced action, Explorer Academy captures the power of learning through exploration. The excitement of hands-on discovery is modeled in Cruz's adventures, which encourages kids to take on the mind-set of explorers.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Daniel Raven-Ellison, National Geographic Explorer and Guerilla Geographer\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e","published_at":"2018-05-09T20:00:00-04:00","created_at":"2018-05-10T16:07:08-04:00","vendor":"National Geographic Books","type":"Books","tags":["$10 - $20","Books","Hardcover","National Geographic","ONSALE"],"price":1699,"price_min":1699,"price_max":1699,"available":true,"price_varies":false,"compare_at_price":null,"compare_at_price_min":0,"compare_at_price_max":0,"compare_at_price_varies":false,"variants":[{"id":8682982801457,"title":"Default Title","option1":"Default Title","option2":null,"option3":null,"sku":"NGOGEOKBEXPLAC","requires_shipping":true,"taxable":true,"featured_image":null,"available":true,"name":"Explorer Academy","public_title":null,"options":["Default Title"],"price":1699,"weight":0,"compare_at_price":null,"inventory_management":"shopify","barcode":""}],"images":["\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/2959\/2384\/products\/ngogeokbexplac_53423453-3d28-4b30-9fe5-27c6a45e1991.jpg?v=1526075863"],"featured_image":"\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/2959\/2384\/products\/ngogeokbexplac_53423453-3d28-4b30-9fe5-27c6a45e1991.jpg?v=1526075863","options":["Title"],"content":"Adventure, danger, and a thrilling global mission await 12-year-old Cruz Coronado as he joins an elite school for explorers.\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003eCruz leaves his tranquil home in Hawaii to join 23 talented kids from around the globe to train at the Explorer Academy with the world's leading scientists to become the next generation of great explorers. But for Cruz, there's more at stake. No sooner has he arrived at the Academy than he discovers that his family has a mysterious past with the organization that could jeopardize his future. In the midst of codebreaking and cool classes, new friends and augmented reality expeditions, Cruz must tackle the biggest question of all: Who is out to get him, and why? \u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003eReaders can get in on the excitement with puzzles and codes embedded throughout.\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"This series opener from a new imprint of National Geographic is a fully packed high-tech adventure that offers both cool, educational facts about the planet and a diverse cast of fun characters.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Kirkus\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"This exciting series opener introduces young readers to the joys of science and nature.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Publisher's Weekly\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Sure to appeal to kids who love code cracking and mysteries with cutting-edge technology.\"  \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Booklist\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"A fun, exciting, and action-packed ride that kids will love.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-J.J. Abrams, director and screenwriter of \"Star Wars: The Force Awakens,\" \"Lost,\" \"Alias\"\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Inspires the next generation of curious kids to go out into our world and discover something unexpected.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-James Cameron, National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence and acclaimed film-maker\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Explorer Academy is sure to awaken readers' inner adventurer and curiosity about the world around them. But you don't have to take my word for it, check out Cruz, Emmett, Sailor, and Lani's adventures for yourself!\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-LeVar Burton, host of \"Reading Rainbow\" and \"LeVar Burton Reads\"\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Absolutely Brilliant! Explorer Academy is a fabulous feast for the mind and heart -- a thrilling, inspiring journey with compelling characters, wonderous places, and the highest possible stakes. Just as there's only one planet Earth, there's only one series like this. Don't wait another instant to enjoy this phenomenal adventure!\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-T.A. Barron, author of the Merlin Saga\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"In the midst of fast-paced action, Explorer Academy captures the power of learning through exploration. The excitement of hands-on discovery is modeled in Cruz's adventures, which encourages kids to take on the mind-set of explorers.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Daniel Raven-Ellison, National Geographic Explorer and Guerilla Geographer\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e"}
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Funk is a software engineer with the nonprofit Girls Who Code so it’s no surprise that computer language saves the day in this story. While many would stumble with such an earnest conceit (coding is great kids!) this story, in which a young girl and her robot buddy solve a sandcastle building problem via coding techniques, introduces basic knowledge in a way that doesn’t feel forced or anything but genuine.
Creating stories for the youngest book-lover is not child's play. The best books have similar traits. Life-affirming messages pitched appropriately for this audience, in a way that engages, while bringing out the best in an older reader. When it all comes together the result is a book that transcends age. We feel these are the best of the best. (Many of these are available as "board books.")
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