Dan Buettner

Does your child thrill to tales of adventure? Ask a million and one questions about the world? Love exploring far and wide? Then odds are good that Dan Buettner (and his books) will have your kid enthralled. Buettner holds three Guinness World Records in long-distance cycling (he’s traveled more than 120,000 miles by pedal power). But it’s not just adventure for its own sake he seeks. Buettner’s philosophy: Expeditions are successful when they convey that sense of discovery to others. “Each trip has its own personality,” Buettner has said, and his curiosity about the world is contagious.

An adventurer with a literary bent, his published titles include Africatrek: A Journey by Bicycle Across Africa, about an 11,885-mile adventure through a variety of landscapes and cultures, and Sovietrek: A Journey by Bicycle Across Russia. Millions of kids know Buettner already since his “quests” to Mexico, Greece, Okinawa, and other locations have included interactive online expeditions followed in the classroom around the world. Each quest involved solving a mystery or making a discovery unique to the place being explored. What more could a kid want?

Being the overachiever that Buettner is, he has not only written books, made interactive features and a documentary, he has won awards for it, too, including a Minnesota Book Award and Scientific American’s Young Reader Book Award. Forget Indiana Jones. Buettner’s the real deal.

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