Death's Door: True Tales of Tragedy, Mystery, and Bravery from the Great Lakes' Most Dangerous Waters (Paperback)

Death's Door: True Tales of Tragedy, Mystery, and Bravery from the Great Lakes' Most Dangerous Waters By Barbara Joosse, Renée Graef (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Barbara Joosse, Renée Graef (Illustrator)
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True maritime stories told in graphic-novel style 

This beautifully illustrated book for children ages 8–11 relates dramatic moments from Great Lakes maritime history in a graphic-novel style. The book’s five true stories span four centuries but take place in one location: a dangerous stretch of water near Lake Michigan’s western shore that is known as “Death’s Door.” 

Young readers will devour these tales of tragic accidents, mysterious disappearances, and heroic moments. The stories feature a 17th-century fur trading crew, an 18th-century Potawatomi trading party, a mail carrier and a shipbuilding family from the 19th century, and an early 20th-century basketball team. The narrator is Death’s Door itself, who wonders why people insist on crossing its treacherous waters, concluding it is “because they are human. Ambitious and restless…but loving too.” 

An informative afterword provides insight into the author’s sources and features archival images and additional historical details about each of the stories.

About the Author

BARBARA JOOSSE is an award-winning author of more than fifty books for children. She lives in Port Washington, Wisconsin. Joosse is also the author and narrator of Shipwreck Walking Tour, an app she created with the Port Washington Historical Society.

RENÉE GRAEF is an award-winning illustrator of more than 80 books for children. She divides her time between Los Angeles and her home state of Wisconsin. Graef is also the illustrator of the Wisconsin Historical Society Press book Sport: Ship Dog of the Great Lakes.

Joosse and Graef’s previous collaborations include Everybody’s Tree, Lulu & Rocky in Milwaukee, and The Fisherman, the Horse, and the Sea

Product Details
ISBN: 9781976600159
ISBN-10: 1976600154
Publisher: Wisconsin Historical Society Press
Publication Date: October 17th, 2023
Pages: 48
Language: English