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Fireworks, Picnics, and Flags: The Story of the Fourth of July Symbols Paperback – April 23, 2001


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 4 - 6
  • Lexile Measure: 990L (What's this?)
  • Paperback: 96 pages
  • Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers (April 23, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 061809654X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0618096541
  • Product Dimensions: 9.8 x 6.8 x 0.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,666,572 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

James Cross Giblin does an excellent job of bringing the history of America's Independence Day to life. Woven into his vivid descriptions of events surrounding the Declaration of Independence (down to the annoying flies and mosquitoes in Philadelphia's State House) are amusing anecdotes--how the 1890s "Society for the Suppression of Unnecessary Noise" tried to outlaw Fourth of July firecrackers; what a Yankee Doodle really is; that Uncle Sam was a real person; and how Benjamin Franklin wanted America's national bird to be ... a turkey. Fireworks, Picnics, and Flags concludes with chapters on the Centennial and the Bicentennial, a July 4 events timeline, and a helpful index. Ursula Arndt's skillful pen-and-ink drawings enliven this already spirited treatment of the symbols and history of America's most patriotic holiday.

Ages 9 and up. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"A crisp, conventional style enlivened with poignant, homely, or dramatic de-tails." Horn Book

"A crisp, conventional style enlivened with poignant, homely, or dramatic details." Horn Book Guide
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Renée Butcher on August 12, 2008
Format: Paperback
James Giblin does a fine job of tying our Independence Day symbols back to the beginnings of our country. After a brief but comprehensive account of how and why the Declaration of Independence was written, Giblin focuses subsequent chapters on such symbols of patriotism as "The Flag," "The Eagle," and "The Liberty Bell," explaining in detail the stories behind these familiar symbols and how each was propelled to the iconic status that it holds in our culture and traditions today.

Unfortunately, while the text of Fireworks... is interesting and age appropriate, the illustrations seem to be more of an afterthought - instead of truly supporting the text, in most cases they seem at best ornamental. The illustrations admittedly are well rendered; however, they lack inspiration, which is especially unfortunate in the case of this book, when there is such potential and opportunity for outstanding supporting illustrative detail.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Simple Style on January 9, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is well-researched and very informative. It is written for an upper-elementary/middle school reader, but is still a great resource for the lower-elem teacher. It could be read aloud to older students in short segments, but is not intended to be shared in its entirety. It is presented in narrative form with pleasant pen-ink sketches.

Great for a research project and a fresh look at some of our unofficial symbols.
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