ORPHANED BY THE plague and penniless, Mateo must find his way in the world. By chance he is made a cabin boy on the celebrated voyage of Captain-General Ferdinand Magellan. The destination is secret, but the crew whispers that Magellan will be the first to sail east to the Spice Islands by going west —and everyone shall return with untold riches.
At sea, Mateo discovers the meaning of friendship, loyalty, and hard work, as well as the delight of first love. But when the ocean rages and brother turns against brother, both Mateo and Magellan are in danger—and it’s not clear if anyone will survive. . . .
“Torrey deftly maintains the taut thread of adventure that, along with the cast of memorable characters, keep the pages turning.”— Publishers Weekly , Starred
“This deserves to be in the hands of every reader who loves history and adventure.”— Kirkus Reviews
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|Title of History eBook: To the Edge of the World|
|Release Date: 12-18-2007|
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|Publisher: Random House Children's Books|
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To the Edge of the World
June 1519-July 1519
On the first day of June, in the year of our Lord 1519, I, Mateo Mac'as de cvila, a Spaniard by birth, buried my parents.
An ugly dog watched. Spotted with mange, the dog lounged in the shadow of a nearby boulder, panting, his tongue lolling out of his mouth while I piled stone after stone upon their bodies. It did not take long before the sweat glistened on my body. The sun was fierce and no breeze blew. But I did not stop. I could not stop. I refused to stop, and my chest burned from the exertion.
I was determined. More determined than he. No dog would devour my parents. No dog would drag them through the city gates of cvila like they dragged Juan Garcia, or young Catalina, to gnaw their flesh while the townspeople fled in horror. I threw a rock, but the dog dodged it deftly, ears flattened, returning quickly to his spot in the shade.
For much of the morning I worked, until finally I fell to my knees before the finished graves. "Father, Mother," I prayed. "Rest in peace." I reached out and touched the wooden crosses, caressed the names etched beneath my fingertips. I crossed myself and asked God to be merciful to their souls.
Afterward, I burned the farm.
My home. Dry, parched land, strewn with rock. A dusty courtyard, surrounded by a fence of sticks. A house of mud and stone. One room. A table. A chair. One rug. Two beds. A curtain dividing.
In spite of the heat, my eyes misted as I remembered. There beside the table, beside the planked surface where beeswax candles once burned, was where my mother read me poetry. To the pride of my father, she could read. "You will teach our son," Tomes had commanded, drawin...