For many young learners, it can never hurt to make history more palatable. The "Graphic History" series aims to do just that, and it achieves its goal superbly. Having had no prior experience with graphic novels, this reviewer was not sure what to expect, but I was pleasantly surprised by the high level of historical accuracy, including direct quotes, vividly realistic illustrations, and abundant additional resources for readers who want to learn more now that their interest has been piqued, including the full text of the Gettysburg Address. The complex and devastating issues of the Civil War are understandably simplified here and the time line condensed, but different viewpoints are provided by various characters' dialogue and the important information is provided in additional text blocks.
Michael Burgan has written numerous books for children and young adults during his nearly 20 years as a freelance writer. Many of his books have focused on U.S. history, geography, and the lives of world leaders. He has also written fiction and adapted classic novels. Michael has won several awards for his writing, and his graphic novel version of the classic tale Frankenstein (Stone Arch Books) was a Junior Library Guild selection. Michael has also worked as an editor at Weekly Reader, the classroom news magazine used in schools across the United States.
Michael graduated from the University of Connecticut with a bachelor’s degree in history. When not writing for kids, he enjoys writing plays, and his works have been staged across the United States. He lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico, with his cat, Callie.