A Tennessean challenges the son of a former president for the White House. They battle down to the wire and when the dust clears, the Tennessean tops the son in the popular vote but is unable to capture a majority of the electoral vote. Sound familiar? While this seems to evoke memories of the Gore-Bush 2000 presidential race, it also describes the 1824 contest between John Quincy Adams, son of John Adams, the second president of the United States, and Andrew Jackson of Tennessee. This interesting biography tells Jackson's story, including his frontier beginnings, his ignoble career as an Army Indian fighter, his heroism at the Battle of New Orleans during the War of 1812 and his rise to the presidency in 1828 when he vanquished President Adams. To her credit, the author does not shy away from discussing Jackson's brutal treatment of Native Americans, for example, forcibly expelling them from Florida and forcing them to march westward, as well as his slave holdings. While this discussion is certainly admirable, the author could have developed these themes in greater detail. However, there is still much to appreciate here, making this title about the first Tennessean to become president a worthy research tool for students, and a noteworthy addition to schools and libraries. 2000, Morgan Reynolds. Ages 10 up. Reviewer: Bruce Adelson
School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up-This book details the life of the colorful, rough-and-tumble frontiersman from his birth in 1767 to his death in 1845. Jackson was a Revolutionary War veteran at the age of 15 and accomplished many things, including serving as president for two terms. Whitelaw's text is well written and accessible for even reluctant readers of history. Average-quality, black-and-white reproductions appear throughout. Report writers will be interested in the many firsts that Jackson scored as president. The author also discusses his harsh treatment of Native Americans and the fact that he was the only president to pay off the national debt. A well-documented and readable addition.-Barbara Jo McKee, Streetsboro Senior High, OH Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.