Much of the essential history of the American Revolution is conveyed briefly through 18 questions and answers.
“Did it all start with a snowball fight?” “Were Yankee Doodles really dandy?” “How did the underdog Patriots come out on top?” “Who joined the Continental army and why did they look so scruffy?” The same enticing question-and-answer format employed in Carson’s previous series entry, What Sank the World’s Biggest Ship? (2012), is used here. Each question is followed by a page or so of information answering the question, though some answers are more thorough than others, and the writing is often choppy. Backmatter includes a timeline, but readers will have to search online for the bibliography and suggestions for further reading. This volume doesn’t quite live up to the promising start to the series, as copy-editing oversights mar the text, leaving in distracting errors of spelling, punctuation and capitalization. Still, the format works well to impart lots of information to young readers, and Hunt’s paintings add drama. The final question—“Were the shots fired at Lexington and Concord ‘heard round the world’?”—offers a hint at the significance of the American Revolution by linking it to later events, such as the French Revolution and the women’s rights and civil rights movements.
An entertaining though superficial introduction to the American Revolution. (Nonfiction. 8-12)