When Mrs. Barrington rolls out a poster displaying all the U.S. presidents’ portraits, the observing and bold Grace Campbell asks, “Where are the GIRLS?”
Learning from her teacher that a female head of state is yet to be, Grace decides she will become the first woman president—of her grade, that is. Running against her rival Thomas Cobb in Mr. Waller’s class proves to be more challenging than anticipated. Through the process, Grace campaigns diligently, creates platforms and learns how the Electoral College operates. DiPucchio demonstrates the intricacies of the process with each boy and girl representing one of the states and their corresponding electoral votes. Creating a bit of fait-accompli drama, she has readers assume the favored will be “the best man for the job” Thomas Cobb, since all the boys hold a few more electoral votes than the girls. But true democracy prevails when the last state of Wyoming casts its three remaining votes for “the best person” and Grace is declared the winner. Pham’s deeply toned opaque and textured paintings of a multicultural group of children bring out the various details of each phase of a campaign.
A timely, well-constructed explanation brought down to a level anyone can comprehend. (author’s note) (Picture book. 7-10)