3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
What a great book! Fun and educational.,
This review is from: How Ben Franklin Stole the Lightning (Hardcover)
I loved this book! I am so impressed with the way Rosalyn Schanzer approached the subject matter and made it a fun read for kids and grown up's alike. The book is a biographical look at the life and inventions of Ben Franklin, but written in very kid-friendly language and in a way that keeps your child's attention throughout the entire book. While the title references him "stealing" lightning, and hence laying the groundwork for electricity, it is just one of the many inventions she talks about in his lifelong pursuit of making things better for all of society through his marvelous inventions. Ben Franklin really was the epitome of a Renaissance Man. His curiosity led to some great inventions, but he was also a statesman, musician, author, philanthropist, and even started the first public lending library (a new fact I had not known). After reading about all of his adventures, I wished I had been around when he was alive just to see how exciting it must have been to live during a time when all of these things came about. I loved this book because it presented one of the greatest Americans in such a fresh and engaging way, that my 8-year old son was more than willing to sit through the book with me and asked to hear it again. It lead to many follow up discussions about his inventions and how they apply to the world today.
The author made the story so engaging it did not feel like you were getting a history lesson while you read the book, but that is exactly what you got. And it was fun. And the illustrations were great. I hope she continues to write books about other popular historical American figures, because she writes these books so well. This is exactly the type of book kids need to read to get excited about history. Which leads me to one side note. She has written other historical picture books for kids, like "John Smith Escapes Again" and "How We Crossed the West". They were good books. But, those two books were much more in-depth and the stories took a lot longer to read. My son was not nearly as enthralled with those books because they were much longer and the stories were far more complex, so do not think that this book will be like those. It is a shorter book, an easier read, and far more engaging.
Teachers should use this book in the classroom when discussing Ben Franklin, and any parent who has a child who likes historical fiction or historical non-fiction will absolutely love this book. My son is not all that interested in historical non-fiction and he LOVED this book. You will not be disappointed if you buy this book.