Thomas Jefferson Grows a Nation
Thomas Jefferson is well known to school children as one of the Founding Fathers, a president, and the author of the Declaration of Independence. But what most young people don’t realize (and perhaps a lot of older people as well) is that Jefferson also was an agriculturalist, a diplomat, and perhaps Americas’s greatest cheerleader. He defended America’s flora and fauna when a famous French naturalist suggested they were puny. He encouraged the farmers to grow a wider range of crops. When he was president, he doubled the size of the country through the Louisiana Purchase. Even after his retirement, he was responsible for the development of the University of Virginia.
Peggy Thomas is one of the premier non-fiction writers of children’s literature, and this well-researched, engaging middle-grade biography will not disappoint young readers or those who teach them. Nothing much escapes her attention. Even the back matter is quite interesting to read and will lead youngsters to explore the subject more thoroughly. The art by Stacy Innerest is interesting but perhaps something of an acquired taste and might appeal more to older middle-graders rather than the youngest of the group.