When asked on his deathbed if he wanted to recant some of the “lies” about his travels, Marco Polo supposedly answered that he had told only half the things he had seen. Fact or fiction, the stories he told in his Description of the World – a memoir of his 24-year voyage through Asia – are still enthralling today. In Marco Polo, for kids, the epic life of this intrepid explorer is tracked across the thousands of miles he covered by land and by sea as an emissary of the Kublai Khan. Kids will learn how, at 17, Marco Polo journeyed to Beijing, where he became a favorite of the Mongol court and was sent out on the fact-finding missions that provided the material for his book.
Kids will discover Marco Polo’s larger world as well, with an overview of many of the other great empires and civilizations of the 13th century. These descriptions, as well as the breathless tales of Marco Polo, for kids who love to wander themselves, are sure to be enticing, especially his account of his voyage home. At 41, after a grueling four-year trek, he turned up in Venice dressed in rags and almost unable to speak Italian anymore. Soon after, he was imprisoned after being captured by rival Genoans, but it was in the slammer that he met the romance novelist who agreed to write his memoirs. And the rest, as they say, is history!