Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Liberty Lee’s Tail of Independence by Peter W. Barnes and Cherly Shaw Barnes: Book Review

Liberty Lee’s Tail of Independence
Author: Peter W. Barnes
Illustrator: Cheryl Shaw Barnes
Publisher: Little Patriot Press/Renery Publishing, Inc., 2012
Reviewer: Sharon M. Himsl
Age: 5 up, Picture Book

Liberty Lee is one proud Yankee Doodle mouse. He helped Thomas Jefferson write the Declaration of Independence in 1776! Barnes's story of America’s path to freedom is told through Liberty’s perky voice, beginning with the first colony in Jamestown, Virginia more than four hundred years ago. Together, Liberty’s mouse ancestors and other brave colonists, such as Captain John Smith, worked hard at building the colony. The settlement prospered and eventually grew into thirteen colonies. And for most colonists, those were "peaceful and prosperous years," writes Barnes—until the King of England ordered a heavy tax on their food, goods and services. Angered over English rule and unfair taxes, the colonists protested by throwing a large shipment of tea overboard into Boston’s harbor. It was the start of the American Revolution. Barnes’s delightful retelling of history is told in rhyme, including the first clause of the Declaration of Independence. Detailed illustrations in bright colors fill the pages with child-friendly maps and historic scenes. Children will like searching for Liberty’s image on every page as the story unfolds, and parents and teachers will appreciate the pace of the read-aloud text. The illustrated timeline and resource at the back summarizing events will help with questions about events that are sure to arise. 

Copyright 2012 © Sharon M. Himsl