George Washington’s Birthday: A Mostly True Tale by Margaret McNamara and Illustrated by Barry Blitt. Ages 4 – 8 (2.5 year old son loved it). Schwartz & Wade. January 2012. 40 pages. ISBN: 978-0375844997. $17.99
Quick Summary: This is a very creatively done book about George Washington as a child on his 7th birthday. This is a fictional book about George Washington that cleverly integrates and dispels many of the myths about him. A fictional book dispelling myths — a happy irony. It is done in a simple narrative that is easy and fun to follow. The illustrations are beautiful and accessible to adults and children alike. The illustrations along with the text make this book a great introduction (and reintroduction) to George Washington.
Our Experience Reading this Book: We highly, highly recommend this book. It was a lot of fun to read this book and my son wanted me to read it to him again and again and again. I was thrilled every time my son pulled this book off the shelf, of his own volition, and asked me to read it to him. I learned things about George Washington and loved looking at the illustrations. It’s a light introduction to George Washington and I’m thrilled that this is how I was able to first tell my son about him.
What has surprised me about this book is how long lasting of an impression this book has made. My son and I read this book months ago. We read it every day for about six weeks and sometimes two or three times in a row. This led to me telling him more about what I know (or think I know) about George Washington. I pulled out a dollar bill and told my son that this is what he looked like when he grew up. I showed him some quarters, too. A few weeks later I showed him the dollar bill and my son proudly declared (at not even two and a half years old at the time) that it was, “George Washington and he was the first president AND he chopped down a cherry tree.” Well, at least he got the first two parts right and he can learn about myths a little later — and at least he has the right myth with the right president. Anyway, I’m one proud mama.
I think it is great that my son has this information somewhere in his brain now and it’s a great start. We’ll come back to this book many more times. I’m impressed with how many layers this book has. I’m also looking forward to my son and I having deeper discussions about George Washington when we read this book later. It’s a book that will become even more interesting to him as he gets older and understands more about the world around him.
I hope you get a chance to check it out. It’s elegant, fun, and very informative.
Where Obtained: Library.
FTC Disclosures: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” If you click on the link and purchase the book, I will receive an affiliate commission. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
Some of my Favorite Reviews of this Book:
- http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/15/books/review/bookshelf-presidents.html?_r=0 (This article also gives a great slide show and list of other picture books about presidents. It is a great resource.)
I’m participating in the Kid Lit Blog Hop over at MotherDaughterBookReviews. Go check out all the bloggers talking about great children’s books!