Editorial Review

A noteworthy review of Our Presidents from Children's Literature on January 1, 2002

Cover: Benjamin Harrison: Our Twenty-third President

This entry in the well-written ‘Our Presidents’ series provides an overview of Benjamin Harrison’s, early years in Ohio, and later in Indianapolis, his compassion and bravery as a Union soldier in the Civil War, family life, rise to political life through the Senate, and important aspects of his presidency, including his support for veterans and his role in fighting trusts. A variety of photographs show his family including two wives, early career, and official government activities. Other outtake pages include information about his grandfather William Henry Harrison’s short presidency and his recognition of the Grand Canyon which was later in the next century made into a National Park. Sidebars include interesting facts and picture captions are informative and lengthy enough to inform casual browsers. Each book in the series ends with a glossary defining highlighted words in the text, a timeline specific to the president’s life, a complete table of presidents through George W. Bush with their home states, life spans, presidential spans, political party and the name of their first ladies. Also included are a page of ‘Presidential Facts,’ numerous web sites and relevant suggested other resources, as well as an index. All in all, it’s a strong, informative, and very readable contribution to the literature about presidents for upper elementary and middle school readers.

—Susan Hepler

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