Author(s): Ann Martin Bowler
Did you know that 85 years before Columbus discovered America, Chinese ships longer than a football field sailed thousands of miles through unknown oceans and visited more than 30 nations? It's true! "Adventures of the Treasure Fleet" is the amazing story of these seven epic voyages and their larger-than-life commander, Admiral Zheng He. Beginning in 1405, Admiral Zheng He led more than 300 gigantic, brightly-painted ships across the South China Sea to the Indian Ocean and all the way to the distant coast of Africa. The admiral and his crew battled pirates and raging storms, and were amazed by the people and ways of life in distant lands. At each port, Chinese goods were traded for pearls, precious stones, herbs and medicines which were given as tribute to China's powerful emperor when the ships returned home.
Ann Bowler was born in the US and raised in Ojai, California. She has a BA in Sociology and trained as a teacher at the University of California, Santa Barbara. She is now a full-time writer and has traveled with her family to Indonesia many times. Ann lives in the Sierra Nevada foothills of Northern California. She has written seven books for children, including "Gecko's Complaint." Illustrator: For her 10th birthday, Lak-Khee Tay-Audouard received her very first picture book, "The Pied Piper of Hamelin," and that led her to the magical world of illustrated story books. Though she has no formal education in the fine arts, she is fond of telling the world about the details found in nature, man-made objects and human situations--by expressing a naivete and child-like innocence through her illustrations. Her inspiration often comes from nature and she is happiest working from home, where she can hear the serenade of frogs and birds every morning. She lives in France with her husband Denis, their two children Baobab and Anais, and their cat Sally.