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When Washington Crossed the Delaware Hardcover – October 1, 2004

4.7 out of 5 stars 73 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 2-4–Cheney chronicles the general's courageous leadership in the Battles of Trenton and Princeton, including his famed crossing of the Delaware River on Christmas 1776. The story is clearly told, although the organization falls apart slightly in the second half. Primary quotes decorate each page, adding visual interest but occasionally disrupting the flow of the narrative. Done in oil paints on canvas, the large, dramatic illustrations create a sweeping feel that captures the mood of the text. While the picture-book format necessitates some simplification of the events, the account is accurate and interesting. A source page cites only the quotes used, and not the information presented, and the book's preface includes the recommendation that grandparents share this book with their grandchildren at Christmastime, which needlessly excludes those "young patriots" who do not celebrate Christmas. This title is more straightforward, but less comprehensive, than Louise Peacock's Crossing the Delaware: A History in Many Voices (Atheneum, 1998). Cheney's offering makes an adequate supplement to history collections, and will appeal to families wishing to read inspirational picture books about America's past.–Suzanne Myers Harold, Multnomah County Library System, Portland, OR
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Gr. 2-4, younger for reading aloud. Cheney delivers a stirring account of this pivotal event in the Revolutionary War, from Washington's Christmas crossing to the Battle of Trenton and the ensuing Battle of Princeton. Framing her narrative with very brief quotes from eyewitnesses, she describes how the retreating, ragtag Continental Army, first bucked up by Tom Paine's rhetoric, then inspired by Washington's example and leadership, turned to defeat "the greatest military power in the world" twice in nine days, thus allowing the Patriots to "imagine that their great struggle would have a glorious end." Fiore's carefully detailed, full-page oils capture the chill of that night on the icy river, as well as the heroism of the American troops (African Americans among them) as they march, gravely celebrate their victory over the Hessians, and, finally, pursue fleeing Redcoats. Young readers or listeners can't help but come away with a clearer understanding of the event's significance, as well as a greater appreciation for Washington's heroism. Source notes are included. John Peters
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 5 - 9 years
  • Grade Level: 1 - 4
  • Lexile Measure: 860L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers (October 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0689870434
  • ISBN-13: 978-0689870439
  • Product Dimensions: 10.5 x 0.4 x 10.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (73 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #146,258 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Lynne Cheney's story of George Washington and his troops crossing the Delaware River is a wonderful presentation of how liberty wove our country's fabric during the Revolutionary War. For children, this story brings to life the courage demonstrated by Washington and his troops, and the honor they earned by taking action in pursuit of liberty. It will not only inspire young patriots, but it will also teach them what was sacrificed to secure the life, liberty and happiness we now celebrate as Americans. Every school in America should share Cheney's wintertime story with its students, for every young child should know what a great struggle Washington and his troops endured and overcame, and how the troops stepped forward with trust in Washington's leadership and with unwavering patriotism to claim victory under the bright light of liberty.
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Format: Hardcover
It's amazing how people insist on making their review of Mrs. Cheney's book into a political soapbox. What? are the message boards at Yahoo not working today?

Anyway, this is an important story for kids of any age to read and learn. I've read several books on the American Revolution and I never cease to be amazed at the courage and resolve that George Washington and his men showed during that bitter winter.

Washington's strict but caring command eventually earned him the full support and love of his men. Men who endured bitterly cold temperatures, living in wood shacks with clothing ill-suited to the extreme weather, and only trying to survive, let alone actually face the most powerful army on earth at the time.

In an age where people are only toO ready to look towards their leaders for their next handouts, it's inspiring to read about people who sacrificed so much in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds.

I think that this small story is one that can be told to kids of any age. From the first time to youngsters as well as serving as a reminder to even kids at the high school level. It's important for them to know the great sacrifices that these men made for their country.

What a joy to read! Thank you Mrs. Cheney!
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Format: Hardcover
I think Mrs. Cheney did a really good job writing this book. When Washington Crossed the Delaware is a learning experience, but also fun to read. I HIGHLY recommend this book for kids. George Washington is one of my favorite Presidents, but until I read this book I didn't know that he crossed the Delaware during Christmastime. The pictures in the book look like paintings in a museum! My name is Haley and I'm a junior reader. Enjoy.
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Format: Hardcover
This is a wonderful book for those looking for great Christmas presents, or for a good Christmastime story from America's past to share with your children or grandchildren. Mrs. Cheney does a wonderful job of telling the story of Washington's crossing in a way that helps children understand just how important Washington's leadership and bravery were at a crucial time in our nation's history. The beautiful illustrations are a wonderful complement to Mrs. Cheney's words. It is indeed an important wintertime tale for all to enjoy.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
"It was November 1776, a time of trouble for our young country"...so starts this lovely picture book, that is educational, inspiring, and has a marvelous layout to appreciate the paintings by Peter M. Fiore, a multi-award winning artist whose brushwork is bold, with a sense of movement and expressiveness in his impressionistic style. This is work that will be liked by all ages, and though most of the colors are in "winter hues", many of them, when lit by candlelight or a fire light, have a brilliance to them, with splashes of red.

Mrs. Cheney has a talent for distilling history into small, memorable sections; her phrases are succinct and beautifully worded, and though much of this story is one of struggle and survival in harsh weather, the feeling is one of courage and determination, and an abiding patriotism.

The square format has a painting that covers 1 ½ pages, and a quote from the Revolutionary War period and Mrs. Cheney's narration covering ½ a page.

The paper is good quality with a nice shine to it, and there is a page of the sources for the information used in the story.

The inside of the cover has a map for Washington's Crossing, the Battle of Trenton, and the Battle of Princeton.

I would have loved this book as a child, having always had a "serious side"; it is an ideal gift for a youngster who is thoughtful and has an interest in history.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Mrs. Cheney shows her impressive qualification to teach our children about the heroism of our past as she makes history come to life in this book destined to become a treasure in the homes of American families. Thank you, Mrs. Cheney, for the distinguished and "take the high road" modeling to our country (especially to our children) that is demonstrated in a project such as this. I encourage anyone looking for a Christmas gift with "real class" to consider giving every child you know a copy of "When Washington Crossed the Delaware."
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Format: Hardcover
When Washington Crossed the Delaware is a very fine book. The lucid writing is informative but also moves the reader to understand the scale of what Washington and his army accomplished, the winning of our country's independence from the British under extraordinarily difficult circumstances. Fiore's illustrations are breathtakingly beautiful. This is a gather around the fire and read to the family kind of book, but it is also a noteworthy accomplishment of historical literacy. Cheney is to be commended for her continued effort to elevate books with a historical genre for children.
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