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Our White House: Looking in, Looking Out is an astounding collection featuring more than 100 award-winning children's book authors and illustrators. It is much more than a history about the home and office of U.S. presidents and their families. Commissioned by the National Children's Book and Literary Alliance, this stunning picture book transcends the bounds of educational textbook, or any particular genre, for that matter. It includes essays by historians and well-known nonfiction writers (like David McCullough), fictional stories, poetry (including a memorable poem about Lincoln and a butterfly by Kate DiCamillo), imagined letters to the president, texts of actual speeches, memoir (including an essay by Linda Johnson Robb about the eerie history of a White House room where she once stayed), transcripts of TV interviews, and clever games such as a "Best in Show" presidential pet contest and a "Who's in the House?" presidential board game. Among the book's most captivating features are the "illustration essays" which feature stories or ideas rendered completely through pictures. Notable examples include David Small's sketch journal "Backstairs at the White House,"depicting all the people who work in the house and keep it running, and Franklin Delano Roosevelt's "Four Freedoms" speech illustrated by Calef Brown, Peter Sis, Ed Young, and Stephen Alcorn.
Our White House will likely be a favorite of children--and adults-who love presidential trivia, historical facts, and old stories. Children who weren't White House buffs already will surely be drawn into this colorful, fun history of an iconic building that simultaneously tells the story of the United States. (Ages 9 to 12) --Heidi Broadhead
Starred Review. Eight years in the making, this anthology of White House history convenes an all-star roster of 108 children's authors and illustrators, as well as a few scholars and former White House employees and residents�and it is a blue-ribbon choice for family sharing during an election year. Chronologically ordered, the entries range from poems to presidential speeches, satirical cartoons to stately portraits; despite the talents of the literary contributors (Kate DiCamillo offers a poem about Lincoln's death, Patricia MacLachlan describes Eleanor Roosevelt's rescue of a cat belonging to a young girl), perhaps the most striking writings are those that most closely adhere to the historical record. Barbara Kerley details Thomas Jefferson's passion for paleontology, and M.T. Anderson describes White House ghosts (Churchill, visited by a spectral Lincoln, �tapped the ash off the end of his cigar and said, 'Good evening, Mr. President. You seem to have me at a disadvantage' �). But few of the writers create the same impact as the occasional document: Robert Kennedy addresses the nation after Martin Luther King Jr. is assassinated, and Richard Nixon bids farewell to the White House staff. (That young readers will react to these documents is in no small part due to the writers' success in establishing the contexts for them.) Among the most provocative entries are works by artists who �look in� on the White House with a demonstrably personal vision: David Small shares color sketches of �backstairs at the White House,� a study in contrasts; Bob Kolar arranges the presidents as if on a board game, with clever annotations (who knew President Arthur held a yard sale while in office?); Peter S�s supplies 37 characteristically enigmatic portraits to illustrate freedom to worship. Although a few entries seem formulaic, the volume makes the invaluable point that history does not have to be remote or abstract, but a personal and ongoing engagement.
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Like all really good children’s books, “Our White House” is as much a treat for kids as it is for adults. It’s packed with interesting anecdotes and delightful artwork. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Ricardo Mio
Quick and easy read of History in the White House - both adults & kids will pick it up and just pick a story...Published on August 5, 2013 by Sister Do
I foond this book quite lovely but short on real pictures. The only true pictures are those of two republicans! The writing is okay, but not great.Published on January 26, 2013 by vivabooks
I love history. I have many books on American history - people, places, events, etc... This is a delightful little tome with wonderful illustrations and stories short enough you... Read morePublished on January 2, 2013 by Audrey Burtrum-Stanley
This is one of my favorite classroom books because it includes several different genres about several different topics, written by several gifted authors. Love.Published on December 23, 2012 by June
I'm from Brazil, and bought this book because Meg Cabot wrote a short with Samantha Madison, the All American Girl's main character. Read morePublished on August 22, 2012 by Cliente Amazon
Delivery was fast and product condition was as described. The packaging was not the best and arrived with some tears in the envelope. Product was still in great shape, though.Published on December 31, 2010 by dtracker
Not many houses are versatile enough to accommodate over 200 years of history, and still manage to be the symbol that the White House is for the nation of people who rely upon... Read morePublished on March 12, 2009 by Patricia B. Ross