Ten Kings: And the Worlds They Ruled

Overview

A riveting portrait of ten kings in history by Milton Meltzer, America's premier nonfiction writer.

This book tells the story of ten kings. Kings made the rules by which their people lived. Kings carried on wars to protect their realms or expand their power, and kings, like the rest of us, were complex human beings. Starting with Hammurabi, who ruled Mesopotamia, to Peter the Great, the legendary Russian czar, Milton Meltzer shows the reader how political leaders use and abuse ...

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Overview

A riveting portrait of ten kings in history by Milton Meltzer, America's premier nonfiction writer.

This book tells the story of ten kings. Kings made the rules by which their people lived. Kings carried on wars to protect their realms or expand their power, and kings, like the rest of us, were complex human beings. Starting with Hammurabi, who ruled Mesopotamia, to Peter the Great, the legendary Russian czar, Milton Meltzer shows the reader how political leaders use and abuse power. Although each of these men lived hundreds or thousands of years ago, these tales provide a striking portrait of how human behavior remains virtually unchanged over time and how one person can alter the course of history.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
In a companion book to his Ten Queens, Meltzer presents in chronological order ten men whose rule changed their world. Each man is presented in ten-to-twelve page sections, illustrated with maps, painted pictures and representations. Included are Hammurabi, David, Alexander the Great, Attila, Charlemagne, Kublai Khan, Mansa Musa, Atahualpa, Louis XIV, and Peter the Great. The text is dense but readable, featuring quotes from a variety of historians to reinforce Meltzer's points, and relying on the reader's knowledge or at least framework of world history to understand all that the text covers. A strength of Meltzer's writing is his careful acknowledgement of conjecture based on slim factual knowledge, or discussion of conflicting information. Andersen's severe portrait paintings represent these kings as a dour, joyless lot who seem burdened, bored, depleted, or stupified by their royal roles. It's too bad, because the illustrations decorate the text but don't attract or inform the reader. That said, Meltzer is a careful researcher, able to interest readers in the power and glory of the king while pointing out in each section's denouement the usually ultimate collapse of what each man amassed or built in his rule. An index and a bibliography of adult sources are included. 2002, Orchard Books,
— Susan Hepler
School Library Journal
Gr 4-8-In this male counterpart to Ten Queens (Dutton, 1998), Meltzer introduces readers to a diverse group of rulers from Hammurabi of Mesopotamia to Peter the Great of Russia. Each chapter includes the individual's name, dates of rule, and a map of the area over which he reigned. Personal stories and statistics are included along with ample information about the civilization and time period. A sampling of rulers from all over the world and throughout history are discussed, even the biblical King David whose reign is not easily verifiable. Lesser-known monarchs such as Mansa Musa of Mali and Atahualpa of the Inca Empire are also illuminated. This attractive, oversized volume contains a wealth of information, including several useful sidebars, and would be especially useful to beginning researchers. Andersen's stylized portraits reflect the regal nature and personality of each individual.-Shauna Yusko, King County Library System, Bellevue, WA
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780439312936
  • Publisher: Scholastic, Inc.
  • Publication date: 4/28/2002
  • Pages: 144
  • Age range: 9 - 12 Years
  • Lexile: 990L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 9.44 (w) x 11.28 (h) x 0.64 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction ix
Hammurabi 1
David 9
Alexander the Great 19
Attila 33
Charlemagne 43
Kublai Khan 55
Mansa Musa 69
Atahualpa 81
Louis xiv 95
Peter the Great 109
A Note on Sources 123
Bibliography 125
Index 129
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