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AMERICA THE BEAUTIFUL by Katherine Lee Bates


by Katherine Lee Bates & illustrated by Chris Gall

Age Range: 6 - 10

Pub Date: April 1st, 2004
ISBN: 0-316-73743-7
Publisher: Little, Brown

Gall, an actual descendant of Bates, illustrates the four verses of this country’s other national anthem with bold, clean-lined, heroic American scenes, from a sturdy rural couple contemplating their “amber waves,” to firefighters raising a flag over the ruins at Ground Zero. This broadly idealistic art is infused with a spirit of inclusiveness, as blind Justice towers over a woman in judicial robes, a Tuskegee Airman poses heroically atop his fighter, and in the concluding spread, East meets West in more ways than one at Utah’s Promontory Point. Gall’s explanatory statements for each illustration precede a musical setting at the end. Pair this uplifting debut with Barbara Younger’s Purple Mountain Majesties, illustrated by Stacey Schuett (1998), which focuses on the poem’s composer. (introduction) (Picture book/poem. 6-10)