Sophie Scott Goes South: 11/22/15
Sophie Scott Goes South by Alison Lester is a fictional picture book based on an actual trip that the author took to Antartica on a research vessel.
As we're a hundred years out from the initial explorations of Antartica there's been a renewed interest in books about the expeditions. Now Sophie Scott Goes South is at the head of the trend, maybe it's the trend setter. But it does share the same hallmarks: mini-portraits of the crew, cutaways of the ship, descriptions of the equipment, etc.
While the basic plot is Sophie Scott goes to Antartica on her father's ship and learns about antarctic exploration, each page is crammed with little doodles that provide further explanation. There are also photographs from the author's actual trip, though the majority of the book is written to be Sophie's journal and her drawings.
There's a layer by layer look at how to dress for Antarctica with Sophie as the model:
And at the bottom of the same page, a carefully drawn diagram of all the different types of icebergs one might see:
And it's that attention to detail that makes Sophie Scott Goes South my favorite of all the recent Antartica books I've read.