A FEAST OF FREEDOM by Walter Staib


Tasty Tidbits from the City Tavern
Age Range: 8 - 10
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The chef of Philadelphia’s City Tavern—a modern replica of a Revolutionary War–era public house frequented by many of the Founding Fathers—serves up a bland broth of historical highlights, from the Tavern’s opening in 1773 and its role as the First Continental Congress’s “main hangout” to a grand pre-inauguration fête given to George Washington in 1789. The local angle gives this quick overview of our country’s first years of independence some value, but the territory has been thoroughly scouted already, and the narrative is constructed more from broad generalizations and doubtful claims (considering the state of food storage in the 18th century, it’s unlikely that the tavern served “stews and meat pies from England” for instance) than colorful particulars. Juarez plants plenty of familiar faces into his period scenes of (rather decorous) revelry, but he also strains for child appeal by adding a shiny-eyed mouse in a tricorn hat as a sort of tour guide/commentator. Most disappointingly, there’s not much about food here, though a closing recipe for “Old-Fashioned Corn Bread” helps to remedy the lack. Needs more flavor. (Informational picture book. 8-10)

Pub Date: May 1st, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-7624-3598-2
Page count: 48pp
Publisher: Running Press
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15th, 2010