Basher History: US Presidents: Oval Office All-Stars

Overview

Basher's US Presidents shows you the nation's leaders as you've never seen them before. Every president, from George Washington to the winner of the 2012 election, has his own entry and speaks directly to the reader. In Basher's humorous fashion, these lively and enlightening articles bring history to life. Meet James Monroe, known as the "Last Cocked Hat" because he pranced around in an outdated wig, hat, and breeches! Learn more about "Uncle Jumbo" (better known as Grover Cleveland): the only president to serve...

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Overview

Basher's US Presidents shows you the nation's leaders as you've never seen them before. Every president, from George Washington to the winner of the 2012 election, has his own entry and speaks directly to the reader. In Basher's humorous fashion, these lively and enlightening articles bring history to life. Meet James Monroe, known as the "Last Cocked Hat" because he pranced around in an outdated wig, hat, and breeches! Learn more about "Uncle Jumbo" (better known as Grover Cleveland): the only president to serve two non-consecutive terms. Find out how Ronald Reagan helped end the Cold War. Quirky facts add interest. Did you know that John Quincy Adams had a pet alligator? That Teddy Roosevelt (and his whole family) could walk on stilts? Or that Lyndon B. Johnson had worked as an elevator operator? Reading this book will put you on first-name terms with every single one of America's Head Honchoes!

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Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
Each of the "Oval Office All-Stars" steps up for a brief say in Basher's newest cartoon gallery--a rare break from his usual STEM topics (Technology: A Byte-Sized World!, 2012, etc.). Sounding downright cheeky ("I was one wise sucker, I can assure you," smirks Thomas Jefferson), each president from Washington to Obama delivers a two-paragraph thumbnail summary of his administration's highlights and, often, lowlights, sandwiched between trios of bulleted "firsts" or trivia. Despite differences in hairstyles, the egg-headed caricatures on each facing page look pretty much alike (Obama excepted), but Basher does add distinguishing dress or other small items, from broken shackles at Lincoln's feet to Calvin Coolidge's pet raccoon. A complete set of postage-stamp–sized official portraits brings up the rear. Green is sometimes loose with his facts--the president is not the "head of the federal government," nor was the system of checks and balances created because presidents "sometimes do stupid things, have crazy ideas, and generally fumble their way through"--and uses an opaque metaphor in characterizing Nixon as "a shifty operator who liked to sail close to the wind" (did he mean "played his cards close to his chest" maybe?). These quibbles aside, the real issue here is that, aside from some of the trivia, all the information is so easily available elsewhere. Like Hanoch Piven's What Presidents Are Made Of (2004), more a quick novelty than a reliable source of information or enlightenment. (foldout poster) (Collective biography. 10-13)
From the Publisher
Library Media Connection

As with other Basher books, the humor, bright cartoon illustrations, and conversational ton of this small title will attract young readers. . . . Fun for browsing, this book also offers quick facts and trivia.

 

Booklist

Readers might already know a lot of this, but Basher and Green serve it up in a hip, imaginative style and throw in some lesser-known facts, too.. . .Another fun entry.

 

Bookpage - The Book Case

[A]n informative little book ...Though the book is aimed at kids 10 and up, those of us on the far, far end of that age range will find many items of interest in Dan Green’s clever text.

 

kidsbookmix.com

Reading this book will put you on first name terms with every single one of America's head honchos.

 

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780753469644
  • Publisher: Kingfisher
  • Publication date: 1/8/2013
  • Series: Basher History Series
  • Pages: 112
  • Sales rank: 1,019,051
  • Age range: 10 - 15 Years
  • Lexile: 970L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 7.10 (w) x 7.10 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Simon Basher is the creator and illustrator of more than a dozen internationally best-selling books for children including the critically acclaimed Basher Science series (Physics, Chemistry, Astronomy, Algebra & Geometry and more), the Go! Go! Bobo books and Basher's ABC. Based in London, Basher specialises in "graphic surrealism" and his original artwork is regularly exhibited and sold in the UK, Europe, USA and Asia.

Dan Green is the voice of Basher, the author of numerous Basher titles including Physics, Biology, Astronomy, Rocks and Minerals and Human Body. He's a journalist and writer with a brilliant knack for communicating complicated information in a child-friendly way.

Dr Edward L. Widmer is a historian, writer and librarian, currently based at Brown University.He served as a speechwriter for President Clinton, has written a book on Martin van Buren and has co-authored a book on presidential races.

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